BAFTA winner Shane Meadows gave a masterclass to Tribeca Film Festival attendees including graduates of the UK Skillset academies on Saturday [April 26].

Meadows, whose latest film Somers Town received its North American premiere here, spoke to an audience that included film-makers from seven UK projects selected under the auspices of Skillset and the Edinburgh International Film Festival's Trailblazers programme.

The British film-maker was due to return to the UK early next week to continue writing his upcoming feature King Of The Gypsies with Paddy Considine.

Speaking minutes before the masterclass, Meadows said he hoped the story of his career would inspire emerging talent to make the most of their opportunities.

'Some film-makers like to keep film-making mythical and mysterious but I don't think it's the right way of doing things,' Meadows said. 'It's almost as if some people are scared of young film-makers coming through. I'm not.

'When I got started making films people never gave me money but I made them anyway. Film-makers have had to wait longer than musicians for their equivalent of the acoustic guitar to come along but it's here now in the form of cheaper equipment - camcorders and camera phones and computer software - and people can make their own films nowadays.

'With Skillset and funding bodies like EM Media you're starting to get a lot of support for youngsters. I started out by making 12 shorts that I'd show to friends in our houses and one day Stephen Woolley saw a tape and offered me my first feature. The business can be heartbreaking at times and you hope you can inspire people.'

As part of the promotional trip Skillset will host a Meet The Brits networking event in conjunction with the UK Film Council LA Office, Pinewood Studios and BAFTA East Coast.

Mike Figgis is scheduled to introduce a compilation of the Trailblazers groups' work for festival guests. Figgis' latest film Love Live Long will screen on April 27 and he will deliver a masterclass the following day.

The Trailblazers delegates are: Cocoon director Hana Tsutsumi and producer, first assistant director and editor Daniel Silber; T.O.M. animators Dan Gray and Tom Brown's Dog producer Hermann Karlsson; Waiting For Exit Music director David Stoddart and DoP Adrian Barry; Ravi Goes To School DoP Harald Beeker and writer-director Anu Menon; Scarlet Sunrise co-director Edward Edwards and producer Anna Higgs; and Friends Forever director Marcel Fores and sound Chu-Li Shewring.

Earlier on Saturday another supporter of emerging talent, Tribeca All Access, arranged a breakfast networking session between young film-makers and Walt Disney Studios executive director of diversity and recruitment Leslie Schwartz and director of production Todd Mercata.