CBC launches $2M relief fund for content creators

The pubcaster's Creative Relief Fund spans development and production and will be administered in three separate streams. (Unlocked)
headshot_officer_barb (1)

CBC has launched a $2-million relief fund to provide much-needed financial support for development and production during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The CBC Creative Relief Fund spans three separate streams: an Innovation Stream; a Playwright Pilot Stream; and the CBC Short Docs Stream. The application window opened today and closes at the end of the day on Friday, April 24. CBC said eligible applicants will be notified of the status of their submission on May 8.

The Innovation Stream is open to both established and emerging creators, and supports “big, bold ideas that are innovative and take creative risks, to be considered for multiple development and production opportunities on all platforms,” said CBC. Genres covered by the fund are scripted (comedy and drama), unscripted, kids and tweens, youth and young adult and podcasts. In order to be eligible, applicants must have one TV, audio or digital credit, or be partnered with an established production company.

The stream for short docs is for “standalone, immersive documentaries under 40 minutes in length, intended for a digital audience,” and projects must be produced and delivered within three months, with filmmakers adhering to all COVID-19 safety protocols.

Meanwhile, under the playwright stream, playwrights must submit either existing plays or new concepts for adaptation on all platforms. The pubcasters says it is looking for concepts that are a “natural fit” for either limited or ongoing series in the comedy or drama genres, episodic or serialized. CBC will fund the writing of a pilot script. Playwrights must have at least one produced play in order to be eligible.

“In this time of challenge and change, we are working as quickly as we can to provide much-needed support to Canadian creators with this initiative that will immediately open up new funding across a range of storytelling,” said Barbara Williams (pictured), EVP, CBC, in a statement.

The Creative Relief Fund is an expansion of CBC’s ongoing effort to support the Canadian creative community as it grapples with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. Other recently announced initiatives include Hot Docs at Home on CBC, a “multiplatform festival-at-home experience” that will see first-run feature docs airing on CBC, CBC Gem and documentary Channel.

A full list of the eligibility criteria can be found here.