CBC launches Breaking Barriers Film Fund

Over the next three years, CBC will invest at least $7.5 million into the initiative for underrepresented creators.


The CBC has launched a film fund with the goal of supporting feature-length projects from underrepresented Canadian creators.

CBC will invest at least $7.5 million into the initiative over the next three years, with Telefilm also pledging to financially back projects produced through the English-language program.

The fund, which is for Canadian projects written or directed by women, Indigenous persons, visible minorities and persons with a disability, is accepting applications now and there is no fixed deadline for submissions.

Heather Conway, EVP, English services, CBC made the announcement at a special screening of CBC comedy series Kim’s Convenience at the Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival.

“This new model will offer vital resources to writers and directors who have historically been at a disadvantage in accessing financing, and will ensure their films are promoted to much broader audiences in Canada, through distribution on CBC’s television and digital platforms.” said Conway in a release.

With the pubcaster pledging to increase diversity on both sides of the camera, the CBC earlier this year announced that 50% of the episodes on five of its new and returning shows (including Murdoch MysteriesBaroness von Sketch Show and Workin’ Moms) were to be directed by women.

Applicants must have previously had at least one feature film showcased at a recognized film festival and their projects must achieve at least 6 out of 10 points on the CAVCO scale to qualify. In addition, projects must be in at least a first-draft script phase — in-production project are ineligible.

Filmmakers can apply to receive either 10% or 20% of the film’s proposed budget, with CBC’s contribution capped at $2 million.