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MTV launches new female-only scholarship with London's MetFilm school

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London’s MetFilm School has announced the launch of the 2019 Voices That Matter Scholarship – Women in the Screen Industries – a scholarship created to support the next generation of female filmmakers after reports showed a lack of female representation in the industry.

This year’s scholarship focuses on women as part of MetFilm School’s overall outreach to groups who are underserved or underrepresented in film.

The scholarship has been created in partnership with the MTV Staying Alive Foundation - an international charity working to build an empowered and educated generation of young people, with a particular focus on providing training and vital funding to youth-led initiatives around the world. Initiatives inclde education on HIV and reproductive health, as well as global transmedia campaigns.

Image Courtesy of Empra Ltd

Image Courtesy of Empra Ltd.

The scholarship only applies to MetFilm School degree courses, the BA and MA programmes in London and Berlin. There are two scholarships available - one in each city. Successful applicants will have their full tuition fees covered, unique access to senior executives from the industry, quarterly mentoring sessions at Viacom’s landmark London HQ offices in Camden, as well as work experience and placement opportunities with the company.

Jonny Persey -  director of MetFilm School – explains why MetFilm School brought the scholarship to life. He says: “We wanted to open up the school to people who have, through no fault of their own, a greater barrier than others to overcome.

“We’re saying that we should challenge every single thing that challenges diversity because holding back diversity only serves to hold back the industry. This year we have focused the scholarship towards a female audience, in order to give a proper focus to the shocking gender imbalance that exists in the commercial film industry.”

A report commissioned by The Writers’ Guild of Great Britain (WGGB) in May 2018 found that only 16% of working film writers in the UK are female, and only 14% of prime-time TV is female-written.

Between 2005-2016 only a quarter of the UK’s feature film producer’s were female.

Not only are women underrepresented in the industry, but they also do not receive equal opportunities within it. The same research report found that films with female writers and producers consistently outperform male-driven projects, but receive far less financing. Despite high return on investment figures, on average films directed by women receive 63% less distribution than those directed by men.

Megan O'Connell, 23 and a student MetFilm’s Ealing campus, reveals her frustrations about the gender gap in the media, but also her hopes for attending a school that now offers a scholarship for female filmmakers. She says: "I hate that the film industry is not an equal split between genders, but it's changing. I look at directors like Andrea Arnold and Angelina Jolie, and I think they're so inspirational they are my role models, and I want to do similar work.

“Strong women have always worked in the industry, and many have paved the way for the likes of me; now’s the time that I feel we’re getting a proper foothold, I’m at a school where I’m pretty sure the gender split is 50-50.”

Image Courtesy of Empra Ltd.

The deadline to submit an application for the Voices That Matter Scholarship is Sunday 14 July. For more information and to apply, please visit MetFilm’s official application page.

Successful applicants will be notified the week commencing Monday 29 July.




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