Netflix announced a commitment of an estimated R5.5 million in the form of a grant and creation of scholarships to extend the support for black representation in the film and TV industry to the creative ecosystem in South Africa on 16 September 2021.
The Netflix Black Creatives Empowerment Fund will be implemented in a two-pronged approach: the first being $100,000 (R1.4 million) grant in benefit of The Independent Black Filmmakers Collective NPC (IBFC).
The second is $300,000 (R4.4 million) designated towards funding full scholarships at higher education institutions in South Africa to support the formal qualification and training of aspiring Black creatives in the film and TV disciplines.
“We recognise that being part of the local creative community in South Africa also comes with responsibilities, in particular the need to develop the talent pipeline and give new voices the chance to be heard,” said Ben Amadasun, director of content for Netflix in Africa.
“Talent development is extremely important to us and we will continue to work with the industry in South Africa to support and develop new opportunities to grow the creative community,” he continued.
The R4.4 million fund will provide financial assistance through full scholarships and graduate debt relief at higher educational institutions in South Africa to support the formal qualification and training of aspiring Black creatives in the film and TV disciplines. Institutions where qualifying students will be able to apply for scholarships and where debt relief opportunities will be available include:
Netflix will again be working in partnership with social investment fund management and advisory firm Tshikululu Social Investments, as the implementing partner/fund administrator with the responsibility of supporting the outreach and execution of the project.
In July 2020 and March 2021, Tshikululu worked closely with Netflix, the South African Screen Federation (SASFED) and their member organisation, Independent Producers Organisation (IPO), to create the COVID-19 Film and Television Relief Fund that helped the hardest hit workers in the South African creative community.
From 17 September 2021,students interested in applying for the fully-funded scholarships will be able to find additional information, application criteria and will be able to apply online on here.
Established in 1998, Tshikululu is South Africa’s leading social investment fund manager and advisor, working alongside investors and other development partners to maximise the power of social investment.
The Independent Black Filmmakers Collective (IBFC) is a membership-based non-profit entity that was established in late 2017 as collaborative business-to-business networking and advocacy group. The IBFC is comprised of wholly black-owned South African film and television companies, independent filmmakers, content creators, film, television and commercials directors and producers, marketers and more.
IBFC was born out of a multiplicity of voices spanning over 25 years, and representing three generations of black film practitioners who have contributed meaningfully in shaping the industry and its visual narratives and aesthetics.