Escape Studios, ScreenSkills and Epic Games partner to help retrain UK film and High-end TV production
Escape Studios is joining forces with ScreenSkills and Epic Games to create the Unreal Pick and Mix, an online suite of free workshops for freelancers and furloughed film and High-end television professionals, taking place between 15th-26th March 2021.
The programme of specialist Unreal training will be hosted online by Escape Studios and is being supported by ScreenSkills, the industry-led skills body for the UK’s screen industries, via their Film and High-end TV Skills Funds with contributions from UK productions by major VFX, animation and film production companies as well as those industries that need to visualise assets in real time. Following on the success of their Unreal Fellowship that reskilled over 100 VFX artists furloughed from some of the biggest companies in the UK, Escape Studios is now looking to assist smaller companies, sole traders and freelancers with a strong remit to spread Unreal Engine skills across the regions and nations.
Saint Walker, Deputy Dean at Escape Studios, is the academic lead for the programme. He said: “As a result of the ongoing pandemic, hundreds of talented production professionals are unable to work, so our objective is to prepare the industry for eventual growth when restrictions are lifted and promote new ways of working safely. We want to ensure that skills in Unreal Engine and real-time production are spread across the UK, to help fuel the UK’s media industries and the individuals who work in it.
“We’re extremely grateful to ScreenSkills for supporting this programme, which will benefit industry professionals around the UK, particularly in regions where there are less opportunities for this kind of training.”
Emma Turner, ScreenSkills’ CPD lead, said: “In these extraordinary times it’s more clear than ever that is important that we innovate and prepare industry to work with emerging and new tech. We believe that our investment in the Unreal Pick and Mix will help future-proof the industry, embrace virtual production and enable professionals whatever their background to get in and get on.”
Jacqui Taunton Fenton, ScreenSkills’ senior HETV training liaison manager, said: “Inclusion sits at the heart of our work. This includes making sure that people can access opportunities to help them upskill and stay up-to-date regardless of where they are based. We hope that the online nature of the bootcamp will help enable the growth of skills in Unreal Engine and real-time production in all nations and regions of the UK.”
As the UK’s only Unreal Authorized Training Centre, Escape Studios has worked with Epic Games on designing the flexible online curriculum in March, allowing a range of options for both beginner and intermediate participants. The programme will give learners the fundamentals and an experience of teamwork to be independent and hit the ground running. Renowned guest practitioners will deliver a range of expert sessions focusing on real-time fundamentals and scene building, environments, lighting, FX, integration, detail and drama.
Further details and registration information is available online here.