Press Release


2 July 2018

Directors UK and Creative Skillset’s High-End TV Council are pleased to announce that the High-End TV Drama Directors Programme will be running again, for another year. 
The further investment from Creative Skillset’s High-End TV Levy Fund allows Directors UK to continue developing this unique programme for aspiring high-end TV directors. The aim of the programme is to raise the bar of excellence among the industry’s rising talent by providing directors with the creative, editorial and technical knowledge they need to become the next generation of high-end drama directors, whilst developing and diversifying directing talent in the UK. 
This year’s programme will build on the success of the 2016/17 programme and will place five directors in five high-end drama productions for up to 12 weeks. The paid placement will give the directors access to all aspects of a production, under the leadership of a mentor director.  They will be embedded in every aspect of the show, from pre-production to postproduction, including prep, story-boarding, script read-through and shooting, all the way to the final edit, with the opportunity to direct 2nd unit and gain an on-screen credit.
Providing this practical hands-on learning and career opportunity within some of the UK’s most popular high-end drama productions, will enable directors to develop the skills and experience needed to work on productions at this level, with the support of the production company, and Directors UK. Recent productions have included BBC Studios’ Silent Witness, World Productions’ Bodyguard, Carnival Films’ Jamestown, Kudos’ The Tunnel: Vengeance, Lookout Point’s Press, Neal Street Productions’ Call The Midwife, and Tiger Aspect/Sky’s Curfew.  This year, new partners working with the High End TV Drama Directors Programme include Sid Gentle Films Ltd (The Durrells & Killing Eve).
Applications are now open for this year’s 2018/19 High End TV Drama Directors Programme.
Andrea Corbett, Skills and Career Development Manager at Directors UK said: “The long term aim of the High-End TV Drama Directors Programme is to equip directors with the skills and confidence they need to become future directors to shape the high-end drama genre. Working closely with key organisation and individuals within the sector is of critical importance to achieve this. From the success of our previous programmes, we know that more immersive and hands-on experience works, by giving a placement director confidence utilising new skills developed and reassurance in the skills they already have, whilst providing them with a supportive environment.”
Kaye Elliott, Director of High End Television at Creative Skillset said:  “Creative Skillset's High-end TV Council is delighted to be supporting Directors UK deliver their director placement programme again this year, which will provide support, development and promotion for fresh UK directing talent for the high-end TV industry. We look forward to seeing the continued success of this important programme over the year.”
Sally Woodward Gentle, CEO of Sid Gentle Films Ltd said: “Sid Gentle is thrilled to be coming on board the Directors Programme this year.  The work done by Directors UK and the High-End TV Levy is invaluable in supporting emerging talent within the industry.  We can’t wait to be a bigger part of their wonderful work.”
In light of Directors UK’s ongoing campaigns highlighting the gender and diversity disparity within UK television, Directors UK continues to work closely in partnership with production companies and broadcasters across the UK to help increase visibility and access to work opportunities, for fairer employment and career progression for under-represented groups, and ensure that the placement directors selected for the programme develop the skills and experience needed to take them further in their careers.
The deadline for applications is Monday 16th July 2018. 
The scheme is open to all qualifying directors. Applications from BAME and women directors are encouraged as the industry recognises that both are currently under-represented within film and TV directing generally*.
More information about the scheme, full requirements and application details are available on the Directors UK website, at 
** ENDS **
*Only 2.42% of TV drama is currently directed by black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) directors (Adjusting the Colour Balance) and only 14% of TV drama is directed by women (Who’s Calling the Shots?).

    ·         Directors UK is the professional association of UK screen directors. It is a membership organisation representing the creative, economic and contractual interests of over 6,700 members - the majority of working TV and film directors in the UK. Directors UK collects and distributes royalty payments and provides a range of services to members including campaigning, commercial negotiations, legal advice, events, training and career development. Directors UK works closely with fellow organisations around the world to represent directors’ rights and concerns, promotes excellence in the craft of direction and champions change to the current landscape to create an equal opportunity industry for all. 
    ·         Further information and a copy of the new contract terms can be found at     
    ·         To become a member of Directors UK for access to training, benefits and discounts, please visit contact us directly at [email protected]   
    ·         Directors UK Social Media handle: @Directors_UK         

    ·         Creative Skillset works with the UK’s screen-based creative industries to develop skills and talent, from classroom to boardroom. We support high quality professional development across TV, film and related sectors – identifying skills needs, targeting skills investment, developing key skills and growing diverse talent networks. Through our industry partnerships Creative Skillset helps to improve productivity, creativity and employability across the UK’s screen-based creative media industries.
    ·         The High-End TV Levy Fund, overseen by the high-end TV Council, ensures a sustainable funding legacy to develop industry skills to support the next generation of high-end TV drama talent.

Tolu Akisanya

Communications and Campaigns Officer

[email protected]

Cookies help us deliver our services. By using our services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn more