The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has extended the deadline for submission of applications for BAFTA Breakthrough India by two weeks, from 25 January 2021 to 8 February 2021.
The initiative, supported by Netflix, generated a consistently high flow of applications from all across India, leading to an extension of the application deadline by two weeks. The BAFTA Breakthrough India initiative marks BAFTA’s arrival in India, showcasing and propelling the upcoming generation of creative talent in film, games and television globally alongside talent selected from the UK, US and China.
A.R. Rahman, composer and BAFTA Breakthrough ambassador, said: “I am extremely proud to see the response that BAFTA Breakthrough India has received from across the country. We have received applications from across the nation, proving that talent can be found in all corners of India. We are so pleased with the uptake and I am delighted to see BAFTA extend the deadline to Monday 8 February. I encourage talented individuals from across film, games and television to get involved and submit their application for what could be a life changing experience.”
BAFTA Breakthrough India is the international version of the highly successful Breakthrough initiative, which has been running in the UK since 2013, China since 2019 and launched in the USA and India in 2020, supporting over 160 emerging talents to date. Encouraging creative and cultural exchange between some of the major centres of film, games, and television in these countries, and (now) India; the programme has supported individuals such as Tom Holland, Letitia Wright, Florence Pugh, Jessie Buckley, Josh O’Connor, and Callum Turner. Supporters of the initiative in recent years also include actors Olivia Colman and Tilda Swinton, actor-producer Brad Pitt, directors Tom Harper and Barry Jenkins, game designers Brenda Romero and Tim Schafer, and actor-writers Sharon Horgan and Amy Schumer.
The candidates who will eventually be hand-picked by BAFTA Breakthrough India, will receive the opportunity to take part in a year-long mentoring and guidance program. The chosen participants will receive one-to-one mentoring, global networking opportunities, free access to BAFTA events and screenings for 12 months, and full voting BAFTA membership. The chosen talent will also connect with and learn from some of the best in the British and Indian creative industries, share their expertise with peers around the world, gain access to opportunities beyond geographical borders, and be promoted as BAFTA Breakthrough artists globally.
The eligibility criteria states that applicants must be over 18 years of age at the time of submission, primary residents of India for at least 2 years, and conversationally fluent in English. With the aim to encourage cross-cultural dialogue in film, games, and television, this programme is looking for candidates who would be willing to collaborate and share their expertise with UK practitioners and/or produce content for UK audiences.