26th February 2020

In conversation with: Nikola Vasakova, founder of Girls in Film

Ella Broadbent interviews Nikola Vasakova, founder of the global female filmmaker support network Girls in Film
In conversation with: Nikola Vasakova, founder of Girls in Film
Photo: courtesy of Girls in Film

The Girls in Film Fund is supported by footwear and clothing brand Dr. Martens and offers one emerging female-identifying filmmaker £5000 to realise their creative vision and produce a film that showcases female strength and resilience. The fund is part of Dr. Martens’ “Tough As You” campaign, which recognises the fierce spirit of those fighting to overcome barriers and the resilience of independent creatives across the world.

Girls in Film strives to tackle the problem of inequality within the film industry and offers opportunities and support to aspiring female filmmakers. Speaking to London based producer and film curator, Nikola Vasakova, who founded Girls in Film in 2016, I learned the importance of the organisation. Nikola explained that support was needed for young women such as herself, as she knows from personal experience the alienation and isolation women can feel in the male-dominated field. She spoke of her own experiences of being the only woman on set and feeling uncomfortable, and the way in which women are patronised and held back from reaching their potential. By providing a network for aspiring female-identifying creatives to meet and collaborate, the group is slowly but surely tackling problems such as marginalisation and under-funding for women in the industry. This fund is, therefore, a chance for the group to provide much needed financial support for female directors and producers in the UK.

The creation of the Girls in Film Fund is part of Girls in Film’s long-standing ambition to break down barriers within the industry. Explaining the choice to collaborate with Dr. Martens, founder, Nikola said that having artistic freedom is fundamental to everything GiF does and stands for and that Dr. Martens is a brand which is closely aligned to the indie filmmaking ethos of creativity and self-expression. She also expressed that she was grateful for brands that support creatives and give the organisation the freedom to work on projects that they are really passionate about. She hopes that the fund, as well as resulting in a great film, will show that with a little money brands can positively impact the community.

Girls in Film is a fantastic organisation which is helping many young women realise their dreams and fulfil their potential. Speaking of what the future holds for GiF, Nikola admitted that while things are changing, there is still a way to go. She announced that Girls in Film are continuing to organise events in London and around the world, and expanding to set up a new branch in Amsterdam. Vasakova also revealed that she would love to do an incubator to jump-start talent in the industry, in addition to other activities to really start making a difference in the lives of creative women.

The Girls in Film Fund is open to all female-identifying directors and producers, and applications are open until 4th March 2020. Girls in Film are looking for projects which celebrate female independence and strength, and display creative freedom and self-expression. Nikola advised that essentially they are looking for an original voice with a story they haven’t seen before. If you are a woman with a vision, don’t hesitate to get involved!

Female-identified directors & producers can apply to the fund and find more information via the Girls in Film website.

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