General + Regulatory + Telecom + Media NewsCBC launches $2M Creative Relief Fund

CBC launches $2M Creative Relief Fund

CBC has launched a Creative Relief Fund that will make $2 million in development and production funding available to Canadian storytellers.

The fund is aimed at providing immediate support to Canadian creators and is open to project pitches from scripted comedies and dramas, to podcasts, play adaptations and short documentaries. 

“In this time of challenge and change, we are working as quickly as we can to provide much-needed support to Canadian creators with this initiative that will immediately open up new funding across a range of storytelling,” said Barbara Williams, Executive Vice-President, CBC, in a release. “As we all look for programming to inspire, entertain and connect us during this period of physical distancing, we want to recognize the incredibly important role our artistic and creative communities serve and provide them with urgent funding to innovate and tell their stories in entirely new ways.”

The fund has three streams:

  • The Innovation Stream supports “big, bold ideas that are innovative and take creative risks, to be considered for multiple development and production opportunities on all platforms.” Both established and emerging creators are invited to apply. Applicants must have one television, audio or digital credit, or be partnered with an experienced existing production company. Genres include: Scripted – Comedy and Drama; Unscripted – Factual Entertainment; Kids & Tweens; Youth & Young Adult; and Podcasts – Multiple Genres.
  • The Playwright Pilot Stream is open to playwrights with at least one produced play to submit either new concepts or existing plays for adaptation on all platforms. CBC is looking for concepts that are a natural fit for either limited or ongoing series in the comedy or drama genres, episodic or serialized, and will fund the writing of a pilot script with an intended broadcast duration of either 30 or 60 minutes. 
  • The CBC Short Docs stream is aimed at documentary filmmakers who want to showcase their unique perspectives on what’s happening in the world during this time of COVID-19. Productions must be produced and delivered within three months or less, with filmmakers adhering to all local and national COVID-19 safety guidelines. CBC Short Docs is looking for standalone, immersive documentaries under 40 minutes in length, intended for a digital audience. 

Canadian creators can apply starting today until 11:59 p.m. ET on Friday, Apr. 24. Eligible applicants will be notified of their project’s status starting May 8. More information and full application requirements can be found at

The fund expands the public broadcaster’s ongoing efforts to find ways to support Canadian creators. On Apr. 15, CBC Podcasts is launching The Show Must Go On, a new PlayME original series featuring audio adaptations from Canadian playwrights whose plays have been postponed or cancelled due to the pandemic. In support of documentary filmmakers, CBC and Hot Docs launch Hot Docs At Home On CBC on Apr. 16, featuring first-run documentary premieres from the postponed 2020 Hot Docs Festival set to air on CBC TV, CBC Gem and documentary Channel.

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Connie Thiessen
Connie Thiessen
Connie has worked coast-to-coast as a reporter, editor, anchor and host at CKNW and News 1130 in Vancouver, News 95.7 and CBC in Halifax, and CFCW Edmonton, among other stations. With a passion for music, film and community service, she led News 95.7 to a 2013 Atlantic Journalism Award and regional RTDNA award for Best Radio Newscast. More recently, she was nominated for Music Journalist of the Year at Canadian Music Week 2019. To report a typo or error please email -

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