The Comcast-owned European pay-TV giant Sky has pledged a donation of £500,000 ($624,000) to the COVID-19 Film and TV Emergency Relief Fund set up by the BFI and the United Kingdom’s Film and TV Charity.

This announcement follows similar donations from other major groups like BBC, Netflix, the BFI and Warner Media to this fund, which provides grants of up to £2,500 to workers and freelancers of the film and television industry that have been directly affected by the pandemic. Numerous productions have been closed across the UK as a result of the unprecedented spread of the coronavirus.

The donation will raise the fund’s value to over £3M, and applications for these grants opened last week. People can apply on the Film and TV Charity’s website, with submissions ending at 6pm on 22nd April. The Film and TV Charity is administering the initiative, additionally supported by the BFI.


‘Those who work behind the scenes are the backbone of TV and film production in the UK. At this incredibly difficult time, it’s important that we do all we can to support our most needy freelance colleagues and we hope that this donation will help to alleviate some of the immediate financial challenges many of them are facing over the coming weeks and months’, said Gary Davey, Sky Studios CEO.

CEO of the Film and TV Charity Alex Pumfrey added: ‘Sky’s support is a fantastic boost to the Emergency Relief Fund that will make a huge difference to many, and Sky’s support of our long-term mental health strategy the Whole Picture Programme means that we’ll be working together to support the workforce through and beyond this crisis.’