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2023 At A Glance
What a year! 2023 has shaped up to be a fantastic 12 months of new opportunities, new partnerships, new communities and new beginnings! Join us as we look back on some of our top highlights…
An Evening of Official Selection Screenings
At the start of the year we were Bristol Aquarium hosting an evening of official selection films, looking back on some of the awe inspiring films from the 2022 Wildscreen Festival and opening up some great discussions with the filmmakers on the empowerment of women and underrepresented groups in natural space.
Wildscreen Glasgow Roadshow
We took our official selection on the road and travelled to Glasgow for a weekend of wildlife films, workshops, panels and networking, allowing us to meet some of our amazing network up in Scotland. With a focus on ocean conservation as well as a whole host of amazing speakers and young programmers, it was a weekend to remember.
Wildscreen Festival Nairobi
This year, working with some amazing partners, Wildscreen Festival was brought to Kenya, where we saw some of the greatest wildlife filmmakers from the African continent come together for 2 days of inspiring panels and craft masterclasses, the films showcased throughout the weekend inspired us greatly, and the incredible variety of stories told at WildPitch created an atmosphere of excitement and hopefulness amongst us all for the future of African wildlife storytelling.
Wildscreen Network hosted 11 networking parties this year, from coffee mornings and evening drinks to summer parties and Christmas soirees, we got to chat with old friends and new across Bristol, London, Glasgow and Nairobi, new partnerships emerged and connections were made. If you made a new connection or gained an opportunity through a Wildscreen event, let us know, we’d love to hear all about it!
The Wildscreen Network also had a fantastic year through its other webinar and discussion panel events, with record breaking turn outs to our ‘Making of…’ series and a whole host of fantastic industry insight across all 10 online panels this year including our month of free Emerging Talent webinars.
Chimp Empire Exclusive Screening
Alongside our Wildscreen Network events in April we hosted the premiere screening of James Reed’s Chimp Empire down at Watershed cinema in Bristol where we got the inside scoop from the team behind one of the years best new natural history series.
Last year aimed to increase diversity in the natural history industry in Wales and the South-West by giving 26 individuals from underrepresented groups a greater insight into the industry through our mentorship scheme in partnership with Screenskills, after several months of fantastic mentorship, the scheme came to an end early this year with 71% of mentees making career progression with in the industry as a result.
Storytelling Internship Scheme
In partnership with WWF UK we were able to create 6 new UK and internationally-based opportunities for 18-35-year-olds wanting to pursue a career in natural world storytelling through our Emerging Talent Internship Scheme, including placements in the UK, Argentina, Kenya, Tanzania and Madagascar across several different industry crafts.
Since January we’ve welcomed (and re-welcomed) 14 members of the team, including 5 interns. As we enter into new phases with the upcoming launch of Wildscreen ARK and next years 2024 Festival, all our staff have made invaluable additions to the future of the charity.
With a larger team, comes a larger base of operations, we moved offices this year into a wonderful new space complete with a couple wild flora and fauna additions to make us feel at home in our natural world storytelling headquarters.
Edge of Nature: Short Film Fund
Besides this years WildPitch competition, we also introduced a brand new emerging talent film fund in partnership with On The Edge. The EDGE of Nature: Short Film Fund was designed to catalyse new and creative projects about EDGE species and zones that brought new perspectives and unconventional approaches to the natural history filmmaking genre. After over 100 applications from 32 countries, 4 teams from around the world have now secured funding from their brilliant pitches to bring their out-of-the-box projects to life and will be premiering their films at next years Wildscreen Festival.
In September we announced the comeback of the world’s biggest online nature education and inspiration hub. Co-created with young people, educators, photographers, and filmmakers, Wildscreen ARK will be a place for young people to grow and develop their passion for nature, and find out how they can help protect it. With hopes to bring free, trusted and engaging learning resources to schools across the UK, the Wildscreen ARK team have been hard at work behind the scenes preparing for it’s launch next year.
It’s been a fantastic year, and these were only the highlights! This year has been absolutely jam packed with amazing new oppurtunities and partnerships across the whole natural world storytelling industry, and if you think that was good, just wait till next year, we’ve got big plans coming in 2024 and we can’t wait to have you all along for the ride.
See you next year folks!