NZ Media Fund:
December 2020 funding round
Information for funding applicants – Scripted, Factual,
Industry Development Fund
This information is for producers intending to make a funding application to the Scripted or Factual streams of
the NZ Media Fund or Industry Development Fund for the December round. In an environment where there
are more applications than available funding, we structure funding rounds so that wherever possible like
content can be considered at the same time. This enhances the contestability of ideas across the applications
considered in each round.
NZ On Air’s funding strategy is founded on core public media principles. These include enriching the New Zealand
cultural experience, improving diversity of media content in many forms, ensuring content is accessible,
strengthening community life, and promoting informed debate. Our publicly funded content may entertain and it
will add cultural value.
For more detail on the strategy underpinning the NZ Media Fund please read the Funding Strategy.
The information and expectations document which we provide to assist commissioning platforms can be read here.
Here are the funding round deadlines fo
C. December funding round priorities and timeline
The December round is for production applications intended to appeal to general
audiences. This is the
third funding round of the financial year, which means we have already had two significant rounds for
general and targeted audiences. These first two rounds alone will likely see 72% of the Factual and around
77% of the Scripted budgets committed.
The priority focus for Factual applications for this round is Quality Journalism, Premier
Stories and Many Perspectives – see our Factual Roadmap for further detail on these
We have notionally allocated the following funding against these genres:
• Current Affairs - $3m
• Events - $300,000
• Documentary/Information - $2m
The priority focus for Scripted applications this round is Premier content and Sustainable
production – see our Scripted Roadmap for further detail on these funding streams.
We have notionally allocated the following funding against:
• Premier Drama - $2.5 - 3m
• Children’s Drama - $1 - 1.5m
• Comedy - $1.5m (given the limited funding available we are likely to prioritise
returning comedy series that have proven audience engagement.)
For information on the Content Development and Industry Development applications being
considered in this round please refer to paragraph D (see over).
11 September 2020, 4pm
Round open for applications.
All applications must be made through NZ On Air’s online application
pplications not submitted through this system wil not be
15 October 2020, 4pm
Application deadline. Round closes.
Late applications will not be considered. In very exceptional circumstances, for time-
sensitive projects agreed prior by the Head of Funding, we may consider an out of time
2 December 2020
Decisions confirmed, applicants notified the following day. This date may be
extended at NZ On Air’s sole discretion.
D. Development Applications
Applications with platform support are open. Given the level of development we have already
supported in the current year there wil be a high bar for new projects to secure development funding. Applications
that are similar to existing development projects are unlikely to be successful. Diverse Development applications
(projects without platform support) are not
being considered in this round as the funding for these was fully allocated
in the July round.
Industry Development Fund:
To this round we are accepting applications to all three strands of our Industry
Development Fund: Professional Development, National Conferences and National Awards. If you have a new IDF
initiative please discuss this with [email address]
before submitting an application. Please see our
Development Roadmap f
or more information.
E. Platform Contributions
Due to the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic commercial media platforms have suffered a
significant drop in advertising revenue. In response the Government has provided a relief package of
additional funding to NZ On Air as part of Budget 2020 that allows qualifying platforms to reduce their
normal level of contributions by up to 80%.
All funding applications should reflect the full amount of the usual platform contribution so we can
determine the 80% reduction where it is applicable. The deduction wil be applied to funded projects,
subject to the platform having their eligibility approved, when funding decisions are announced.
Please read the full Platform Initiative information, eligibility criteria and application process here.
We stil expect platforms to contribute 50% of the budget of the development applications that they
support in this round.
F. General Guidelines
Information on NZ Media Fund general guidelines and how to make a funding application can be seen here.
G. Upcoming Rounds and Other Funding/Development Opportunities
(dates for this round will be published after the September meeting)
NZ On Air/Te Māngai Pāho Co-Fund
A priority for this round will be the consideration of Scripted and Factual $4m
shortlisted applications to the 2020 NZ On Air/Te Māngai Pāho Co-Fund.
• An RFP for this fund will be released after the September Board Meeting.
• NZ On Air will be contributing up to $4m to this fund with a similar
contribution from Te Māngai Pāho.
• This fund will be open to Factual and Scripted proposals and will be a
two-stage submission process with the first stage submission in Oct/Nov
with full, shortlisted applications due in Jan 2021.
Asian NZ Factual RFP
Up to $2m will be made available for Factual content by, for and about pan-
Asian and Middle Eastern, Latin American or African (MELAA) audiences in NZ.
• An RFP for this fund will be released after the September Board Meeting.
• There wil be an expectation that there wil be representative key
personnel driving the pan-Asian and MELAA cultures to be depicted
within the content. At least 2/3 roles of writer, producer, director will be
expected to be of Asian or MELAA descent.
• If the Producer is of non-Asian or non-MEELA descent, co-producer
partnerships with Asian or MEELA producers are encouraged.
Scripted – Newer Storytellers
A limited amount of funding (up to $1.5m) will be available for Scripted –
Newer Storyteller projects with the intention of funding 2-3 projects – please
discuss this with the Funding team if you are intending to apply to this round.
(dates for this round wil be published after the September meeting) Youth RFP
This round will consider applications to a Youth content RFP that will be
$2.5m - 3m
released before the end of the year. We are currently undertaking a Children
and Youth Media Review that will inform this RFP.
• This RFP wil have funding of up $2.5 - 3m available and will be open
for Factual (circa $1m) and Scripted applications (circa $1.5 – 2m).
HEIHEI Returning Series
This round will also accept applications for HEIHEI returning series where the
previous series has been fully delivered.
• Funding of up $2m wil be available for Factual ($1m) and Scripted
($1m) HEIHEI returning series that launched on HEIHEI after the
Aug/Sep Children’s funding round deadline.
H. Cultural Sector Capability Funding - $500k
NZ On Air has been allocated $2m over two years for Cultural Sector Capability Funding. The high-level objective of this
Capability Funding is to strengthen the employment opportunities for established and emerging screen talent in the
This funding is specifical y for industry capability development outcomes rather than content development.
During the first lockdown, NZ On Air witnessed an unprecedented ‘coming together’ of guilds and industry bodies to
address the col ective issues facing the sector in the wake of COVID-19. We propose a sector-wide call out inviting
applications demonstrating sector collaboration and industry initiatives that will aim to boost the technical and
business capability of the screen sector.
We expect to see joined-up sector applications with a focus on pressures facing the sector which have been further
impacted by Covid-19 and we will expect applications to apply a representation lens as outlined in NZ On Air’s 2020
Any potential initiatives will need to be designed as discrete schemes given this funding is not additional baseline
An RFP for this fund wil be released in November once we have incorporated sector feedback on proposed guidelines.