Filmmakers who have short films selected and screened at the British Urban Film Festival will now be eligible to enter their film for the BAFTA film awards.
The festival, founded in 2005 by Emmanuel Anyiam-Osigwe MBE, has been added to Section B of the BAFTA Qualifying Festivals List for the British Short Film award.
The list, recently expanded to include festivals with representative and inclusive programming, exists to identify British short films on the festival circuit which maybe eligible to enter the British Short Film award. British filmmakers whose films screen at two festivals from Section B qualify to enter the British Short Film award. (The list for the Film Awards in 2020 can be found at awards.bafta.org/entry)
BUFF is the brainchild of Emmanuel Anyiam-Osigwe – awarded the MBE for services to the Black and minority ethnic film industry – who founded the festival when he was a student at the University of West London. The festival has its own awards ceremony (which honoured actor Noel Clarke last year) and its own production house, releasing No Shade in cinemas in 2018.
The festival is widely acknowledged for its celebration and showcasing of diverse film talent both on-screen and off screen. With BUFF 2020 scheduled for later this autumn, the announcement gives filmmakers the opportunity to have their work seen by a BAFTA committee and further cement BUFF’s reputation as a major player on the national and international film circuit.
It also means that British short film submissions for next year’s festival will also be eligible to be entered for the BAFTA film awards in 2022, if selected and screened at BUFF 2021.
In addition to its status as a BIFA qualifying festival, BUFF is a qualifying festival for the African Movie Academy Awards (AMAA), a partner of the Iris Prize LGBT+ film festival (based in Cardiff) and is recognised as a Gold festival on the Film Freeway platform where filmmakers can submit their films online.
Emmanuel Anyiam-Osigwe, Founder & CEO of BUFF, commented: “BUFF has a rich history in British Short Film, screening work over the years from the likes of Idris Elba, Destiny Ekaragha, Chiwetel Ejiofor, James Webber, Aml Ameen & Dionne Edwards. BAFTA’s recognition of the British Urban Film Festival in Short Film is testament to the high standard of films we attract and will continue to command as a bastion of diversity.”