Edge Hill and Screenlife Liverpool’s Accelerator Programme ends today (26th March) with an online ceremony to celebrate its participants being the UK’s first ever cohort of filmmakers who have been trained to use these innovative techniques.

The Screenlife Accelerator Programme, which started in January, was run by the University’s Institute for Creative Enterprise (ICE) in partnership with Screenlife Liverpool, Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and supported by Hollywood director, producer and creator of Screenlife, Timur Bekmambetov.

A group of 30 young filmmakers, writers and artists from all over the Liverpool City Region have been taught how to use Timur’s ground-breaking Screenlife filmmaking technology. They are now the UK’s first filmmakers trained to use the Screenlife format giving them new, exciting career opportunities.

Director of the Institute for Creative Enterprise, Martin McQuillan, said, “Screenlife technology and principles have enabled filmmakers to carry on creating and innovating during a worldwide crisis. Not only that but the new skills those on the course have learnt will give many the opportunity to access the film industry for the first time.”

The beauty of Screenlife means that all the work can be done at home, all that’s needed is a computer.

Timur said: “I would like to thank our Director of Operations for Screenife Liverpool Joann Kushner for putting this collaboration together.  It’s been great to witness the energy that the Accelerator course has generated amongst LCR Creatives, some really exciting concepts have been produced and I hope that this is the beginning of a productive Journey for Screenlife Liverpool, the Participants and EHU”

As a final piece of work, everyone on the course was encouraged to create proof-of-concept trailers for new projects that will be pitched to major film studios and financiers to be developed for commercial production, giving potentially exciting opportunities for everyone taking part.

The 12-week course included weekly webinars hosted by key creatives from Bekmambetov’s production banners in Hollywood, Europe, and Russia as well as talks from industry veterans like the producer of “Searching”. As well as learning about Screenlife, participants were taught about film production, directing and financing to give them a broad knowledge of the film industry.

Filming a screenlife film

Andy Smith said: “I’m a film maker by trade but the pandemic made work hard to find. When I saw an advert for the Screenlife course I signed up mostly out of curiosity. I quickly realised what a great opportunity it is to learn an entirely new way of making films and I’ve honed my editing and film making skills. It’s been an amazing experience.”

Jaynie Miller said: “For me it’s all about the Screenlife format, I think its so innovative and of the now, especially during the pandemic where our entire lives have been online. Coming from a traditional film making background I was sceptical at first but I’ve really come to love it. If your looking at exploring methods of modern story telling look no further.”

Many of the course participants have praised the accelerator programme for showing them new technology and new possibilities.

Liam Hindle said: “My wife and I run the Immense Dance and Musical Theatre School in Liverpool teaching kids performing arts skills. After being on the course I’m hoping to set up some classes teaching editing and film making. We’re also working on a marketing strategy based around Screenlife. Its really opened up a lot of opportunities for our business.”

Tom Shennan said: “The course was really wide-ranging so I’ve boosted both my creative skills and business knowledge. I also think that Screenlife is incredible technology for anyone just starting out. You can make engaging, beautiful films using Screenlife with very little money and all from the comfort of your own home.”

The course is part of the Digital Skills for the Workplace programme, developed locally by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, working with local employers and funded by the Department for Education. For more information on Screenlife, click here.

Connecting Edge Hill with the digital and creative economy and with cultural organisations is done in several ways at the University, including via the work of the Institute for Creative Enterprise. For more information about the work of ICE, visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/ice/, where you can also listen to podcasts from creative industry insiders.

If you would like to study film at Edge Hill there are a number of courses available including BA (Hons) Film Studies, BA (Hons) Film Studies with Film Production and BA (Hons) Film and Television Production. For the full list of film and tv courses the university offers visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/film-and-tv.