Ollie Madden

Source: Film4

Ollie Madden

Film4 has confirmed a 10% drop in its annual budget, reducing from £25m to £22.5m for January-December 2024.

“Film4 is the largest PSB [public service broadcasting] funder of independent film in the UK. Our budget is set annually, in line with Channel 4’s financials, to ensure we can best deliver sustainable, long-term support to the industry,” said a statement from Film4.

“We have recently had some of our most prolific and successful years, and we are committed to maintaining a similar level of support in the future, backing around 10-12 films per year, maintaining our cultural impact and continuing to champion the most distinctive and innovative filmmaking talent.”

The £25m budget was first secured in 2016, a significant increase on the £15m per year Film4 had previously received. Through this it backed around 10-12 films a year, mostly co-financing with other partners, with a development slate of around 120 projects at any one point. Film4’s revised budget is still higher than BBC Film, which has £11m, and the BFI Filmmaking Fund, with around £18m per year. 

The change comes amid challenging times for Film4’s parent broadcaster Channel 4. In January Channel 4 announced its headcount will reduce by 18%, with around 200 redundancies and the closure of approximately 40 unfilled roles, which Alex Mahon, chief executive of Channel 4, accorded to the “reality of the rapid downshift in the UK economy and advertising market demand”.

Screen understands that the consultation process is still ongoing regarding any potential redundancies within the Film4 team, and that only one or two roles may be impacted. 

Amid a restructure at Channel 4, Film4 head Ollie Madden has expanded his role to encompass TV drama commissioning, taking over from Caroline Hollick. Film4 chair Daniel Battsek has now left the organisation to move to the US, unrelated to the Channel 4 restructure.