The UK-based Directors GuildTrust has launched a new training programme, Direct Access, which has thebacking of established names including John Madden, Richard Eyre and DavidYates.

The programme, inpartnership with Film4 and Skillset's A Bigger Future with the UK Film Council,will let new film-makers observe an established director on a project frompre-production through shooting.

"It's an invaluableexperience if a first time director is to be able to anticipate and negotiatethe myriad problems and decisions he or she willencounter," said Shakespeare In Lovedirector Madden.

Added Film4's head of filmTessa Ross: "Nurturing and supporting new talent is crucial to what we do atFilm4. The opportunity to observe some of the UK's great directing talents at work will be aninvaluable eye opener for those just starting out."

The programme will run from January2007 and applications and information are available through the Directors GuildTrust, +44 (0)207 5809131 or