With the aim of promoting Maltese literary works by supporting the production of a feature-film adaptation of a National Book Prize winning or shortlisted novel, the National Book Council (NBC) is launching the second call for applications for the NBC Film Adaptation Fund. 

The fund is welcoming applications from audiovisual production companies registered in Malta or Europe, and seeks to address all stages of development and production of one winning project with a maximum financial allocation of €200,000 awarded according to the decision of an independent evaluation panel. 

The fund supports the filmic adaptation of a novel which has been shortlisted for or awarded the National Book Prize in the Category for Novels in Maltese or English in any edition since the Prize’s inception in 1971. The film adaptation should result in a feature-length film of 80 minutes or longer. 

The NBC Film Adaptation Fund is a biennial fund first launched in 2019. The production grant from the first call has been awarded to Shadeena Entertainment for their adaptation of Alex Vella Gera’s Is-Sriep Reġgħu Saru Velenużi (Merlin Publishers, 2012), which is due for theatrical release later this year.

Audiovisual production companies interested in applying must hold the rights to adapt the novel, produce and distribute the film, in the form of an option agreement, prior to submitting their application. Applications should also include a detailed project plan, a financial breakdown and letters of intent from the Director/s and Producer/s. The complete Regulations and Assessment Criteria have been collated in a Guidelines document containing all information for applicants. Interested applicants should make sure to read the Guidelines carefully and in their entirety, including all Annexes.

The beneficiary of the production grant will be required to enter into a contractual agreement with the NBC by December 2021 and expected to deliver a final cut of the film to the NBC in 2023. 

The NBC reserves the right to screen the film on non-commercial terms at special events in Malta and abroad to promote the literature of Malta and the funding programme. Throughout the production period, the team must remain in touch with NBC administrators to ensure that the project is developing according to the proposal and in line with the Assessment Criteria and Regulations. 

Apply by sending in four hard copies of the full application to the National Book Council, Central Public Library, Joseph Mangion Street, Floriana, FRN 1800, by 30 August 2021. Only completed applications will be accepted. 

The Fund Guidelines and the Application Form can be downloaded from here.

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