Guiding Lights, the mentoring programme backed by Skillset and the UK Film Council and run by Lighthouse, has kicked off its 2008/2009 edition.

Optimum Releasing also sponsors the initiative; Working Title's Tim Bevan chairs the steering committee.

Each mentor and mentee will have one-on-one meetings and also attend networking events, masterclasses and film festival seminars.

Bevan said: 'Guiding Lights is a great mechanism for bringing new blood into British film as well as being a vital opportunity for those at the top of their game to channel what they've learned back into the industry.'

Janine Marmot, director of film at Skillset added: 'On the back of a truly successful Guiding Lights programme, Skillset is delighted to be supporting this programme once again - which gives participants a unique insight into the film industry with the support of key, dedicated industry mentors with an enormous amount of experience. It is no surprise that this programme attracts exceptional practitioners and exceptional candidates.'

Past Guiding Lights mentees include Laura Hastings Smith, one of the producers of Cannes hit Hunger.

This year saw a 60% increase in applications.

This year's participants, with confirmed mentors where available, are:

Jenny Walker - Paul Webster
Yaw Basoah - Alison Owen
Alex Boden
Christine Hartland - Damian Jones

Faye Gilbert
Robert McKillop
Asitha Ameresekere - Anand Tucker
Nicola Mills - Roger Michell
Rachel Tillotson - David Yates
Rebecca Johnson - Paul Greengrass
Samantha Harrie - Kevin Macdonald
Susan Jacobson - Gillies MacKinnon

Faye - Remi Adafarasin
David Raedeker - Barry Ackroyd
Stephanie Hardt - Oliver Stapleton
Urszula Pontikos - Seamus McGarvey

Business Categories
Stephen Spence (Business Affairs) - Andrew Hildebrand
Katheryn Needham (Sales) - Alison Thompson
Alice Stilgoe (Exhibiton)

Keri Collins
Joseph Hepworth - Frank Cottrell Boyce
Nicholas Horwood
Catherine Skinner
Isabel Anderton
Rupert Raby