37 orgs to receive funding

The British Film Institute has announced the first round of projects it will back under its new €2 million ($3.2 million) lottery transition fund, with nationwide after-school program FilmClub and the British Independent Film Awards among the 37 benefactors.

BFI dolled out $1.4 million from the fund, which was set up quickly in April to support audience development projects facing cuts as a result of national and regional slashes to the cultural budget. FilmClub was awarded $227,194 while the BIFAs won $84,944.

Other recipients include Bristol’s arts venue and cinema Watershed ($108,751), Encounters Bristol Film Festival ($80,555), the Sheffield Documentary Festival ($124,782) and the British Federation of Film Societies ($76,674).

BFI awarded the Edinburgh Film Festival $31,607 prior to this year’s edition, in an effort to help support the fest, which had one of its most uninspiring editions to date in June.

“We have moved as swiftly as possible to ensure that film organizations are able to survive in this period of transition,” said BFI head of distribution and exhibition Peter Buckingham. “Collectively they contribute hugely to the access and promotion of film in the U.K.”

The next round of funding for projects will be announced before the end of the month.

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more