New programme secures over 3,000 days of work in six months

Jodie Turner-Smith as Anne Boleyn in the self titled series filmed entirely in Yorkshire (Photo Credit: Parisa Taghizadeh)

A new crew service launched by Screen Yorkshire’s Film Office has secured 3,127 days’ work for skilled freelancers working in the region’s growing film & TV sector.

The region wide service launched in the midst of the pandemic in July 2020, as part of Screen Yorkshire’s response to support the hard-hit freelance workforce. The service provides a platform to connect film and TV production companies with skilled freelancers, ensuring that the maximum number of local crew are hired by productions filming in the region.

Olivia Thomas, film office coordinator at Screen Yorkshire said: “The impact of our crew service has been remarkable and demonstrates the resilience of Yorkshire’s film & TV industry in the face of Covid. After such a tough year, supporting our freelance community has become more important than ever. And because of a halt in filming during the first lockdown, we are seeing a real upturn in demand for filming services and crew in the region.”

During the first six months of operation, the service has secured work for freelancers across 99 individual job roles on productions filming in Yorkshire, including, Anne Boleyn which filmed entirely in Yorkshire in 2020 at locations including Castle Bolton in Richmondshire. Production company Fable Pictures hired 12 members of the crew service: across the locations, camera, sound, hair and makeup, and Covid health & safety departments.

Claire Campbell, head of production at Fable Pictures, said she was “bowled over” by the support from Screen Yorkshire from the start of the project in 2019 to the completion of filming in December. Addding “We will definitely be back” and that Yorkshire featured “wonderful locations and great crews.”

Other productions that have utilised the crew service over the past six months include returning series’: Gentleman Jack (BBC One), All Creatures Great and Small (Channel 5), The Witcher (Netflix), Ackley Bridge (Channel 4), The Syndicate (BBC One), Emmerdale (ITV) ,as well as factual shows such as Steph’s Packed Lunch (Channel 4) and Saved and Remade (BBC Two).

The service also supported the next generation of talent with Screen Yorkshire placing trainees on productions including German drama The Search through its Beyond Brontës programme, which is designed to increase the diversity of the local screen industries workforce.

Screen Yorkshire’s crew database currently features over 500 individuals and is open to freelance regional crew who have at least one professional film or TV credit in drama or non-scripted.

Following the success of the programme, Screen Yorkshire plans to build to support more crew at all stages of their career through its one-to-one advice sessions and hosting more online networking forums throughout 2021.