The Children’s Media Foundation (CMF)


The Children's Media Foundation was originally founded in the 1950's as the Children's Film Foundation, which in the 70's became the Children's Film and Television Foundation.

In 2011 the organisation changed once more, to recognise and respond to children's use of many different media platforms and types of content for their entertainment and enlightenment: TV and on demand services, games and apps, audio, social media, cinema, virtual and augmented reality and more.

The Children's Film Foundation (CFF) was set up with the support of Lord Rank in 1951.  Its remit was to make films specifically for children to be screened at Saturday morning matinees and used in schools.

The Foundation was supported by the British Film Industry and an annual grant from the Eady Levy, which was a tax on the sale of cinema tickets. In 1950 the Foundationreceived 5% of the total fund and continued to be well funded from this source. This enabled the Foundation to make five or six low budget films a year.

The full list of titles can be explored in detail in the CFTF Catalogue and clips of CFF films can be seen at the CFandTF channel on YouTube

DVD collections of CFF films curated by the British Film Institute can be purchased at the BFI Filmstore.

These films were very successful and inspired a whole generation of new cinema-goers. They also gave an opportunity for a number of child actors and actresses, who later became stars, to begin their careers. These included Francesca Annis,  Michael Crawford and Dennis Waterman.

Soap Box Derby with Michael Crawford (1958)

When the Eady Levy ceased to exist, the Foundation re-organised itself into a development funder for both film and television projects, under a new name, The Children's Film and Television Foundation (CFTF).

For the next few years the Foundation funded development of some films including Danny the Champion of the World, but concentrated more on television series, enabling the commission of series such as The BorrowersThe Queen's NoseThe Magician's House (1999), Gypsy Girl (2001) and An Angel for May '(2002).

Subsequently, the CFTF together with the UK Film Council and the BBC set up a  script development fund for 'family friendly' features.

Five projects were developed through this fund:

The CFTF script development fund is now closed.  The CMF does not currently offer financial support for content development.

The Children’s Media Foundation (CMF)