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UK industry to create films people actually want to watch


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#1 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 04:34 AM

http://www.bbc.co.uk...t-arts-16495095

Well, yes.

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#2 James Lee

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 06:06 AM

hah.. congrats, Australia is still far, far behind.
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#3 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 09:06 AM

From what I gather it's up to 15% of the budget, so it may or may not allow some films to get that last percentage they need.

Of course, picking films people want to watch is the big trick, not even the Hollywood studios can do that one all the time.
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#4 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 09:08 AM

Of course.

And the wider issue is that even if we do make populist material, it's almost impossible to have it distributed.

The most powerful, and only worthwhile, thing Cameron could possibly do is to introduce some sort of legal protection for homegrown product from being absolutely steamrollered by American imports. And Cameron is a conservative, which means rather different things here in the UK, but what they do have in common with their American counterparts is that they will always, always support the biggest business no matter what. Therefore, protecting the UK industry from Hollywood is something they will never, ever do.

So we're still screwed.

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#5 Brian Dzyak

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 09:29 AM

Of course.

And the wider issue is that even if we do make populist material, it's almost impossible to have it distributed.

The most powerful, and only worthwhile, thing Cameron could possibly do is to introduce some sort of legal protection for homegrown product from being absolutely steamrollered by American imports. And Cameron is a conservative, which means rather different things here in the UK, but what they do have in common with their American counterparts is that they will always, always support the biggest business no matter what. Therefore, protecting the UK industry from Hollywood is something they will never, ever do.

So we're still screwed.

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As I've said before, we're merely in a pretend-Global economy. If we wanted a true Global "Free Market" economy, it would require the use of a single worldwide currency and absolutely zero restrictions on labor moving from one nation to another. The only other solution is just what you allude to above, a return to trade isolationism policies that were in effect prior to 1980 to protect a nation's own manufacturing base and products. But obviously, Corporations rather enjoy being able to scour the globe for cheap labor and bribes ("incentives") from governments who are stupid enough to hand over tax payer money to the private sector getting absolutely nothing in return.

What other nations (non-USA) need are not protections for their own products, but rather, tariffs for anything imported that "encourage" local theater owners to show more local product.
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#6 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 10:16 AM

I agree completely.

Also, having now actually watched the Ken Loach interview, I think there's another issue with regard to identifying potentially-successful films. As has been accurately pointed out both by him and in this thread, it is impossible to accurately predict which films will be very commercially successful.

On the other hand, it certainly is possible to identify films whose potential for success is microscopic. Ken Loach films, for instance. Loach presumably knows that his films are not commercial and is therefore required to promulgate the, ahem, political convenience that nobody knows anything in order to continue doing what he does. Ultimately though I think he's a hypocrite, because when he complains that Hollywood movies benefit only Hollywood, it's probably just as true that Ken Loach movies benefit only Ken Loach.

I can't claim to be an expert at this myself. While I don't necessarily disagree with a lot of Loach's politics, I find his films, with their sledgehammer-subtle socialist overtones, utterly predictable and tedious. On the other hand, I would have said the same about The King's Speech, and it turned out to be reasonably successful (for the hollywood studio that funded it).

Even so, I think we should treat Loach's feelings about commercial filmmaking with great caution.

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#7 Rex Orwell

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Posted 02 February 2012 - 08:58 AM

And so the empty soulless entities adopt an advisory mask over all within their field of vision, shaping what they see into pound and dollar symbols and how many figures line up in a row after them. After the wake of destruction left behind they have the audacity to pretend that the modus operandai is to allow creativity and art to flourish. Torn between the desire to accumulate more power, furthering the 'great' work and what they know fuels the human spirit.

How dare the hollow men pontificate over the filmmaking community.

And how dare the media arm remove time away from the conscious mind of the audience and it's considering the atrocities currently being perpetrated by the very same individuals.
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#8 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 02 February 2012 - 10:22 AM

Sorry... what?

If you're saying what I think you're saying, yes, fine, creativity and art are great, but in the UK what we've done recently is use a lot of public money to prop up people basically pursuing their hobbies, which employs people only in the very short term and doesn't create a self-sustaining industry.
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#9 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 02 February 2012 - 02:31 PM

And so the empty soulless entities adopt an advisory mask over all within their field of vision, shaping what they see into pound and dollar symbols and how many figures line up in a row after them. After the wake of destruction left behind they have the audacity to pretend that the modus operandai is to allow creativity and art to flourish. Torn between the desire to accumulate more power, furthering the 'great' work and what they know fuels the human spirit.

How dare the hollow men pontificate over the filmmaking community.

And how dare the media arm remove time away from the conscious mind of the audience and it's considering the atrocities currently being perpetrated by the very same individuals.


Pretentious crap like this is part of the reason British films make no money. It's a business, kids. There is absolutely no reason why public money should be used to fund films that the public would never watch. Investors have a right to expect a return, and that doesn't change just because the investor is the taxpayer.
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#10 Richard Boddington

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Posted 02 February 2012 - 04:55 PM

Well TeleFilm Canada has funded one non-commercial box office failure after another for decades now. It's a 130 million dollar a year boondoggle.

No other film funding agency on the planet has funded more box office failures than TeleFilm has. Their stated goal is get Canadian films made and into theatres in Canada. Ready for this, Canadian films make up 1.4% of screen time in English Canada!!

Guess what, TeleFilm trumpets that as a huge success!! Only in Canada would getting 1.4% of anything be seen as a success.

TeleFilm recently plowed 1.8M into a movie called, The Boy Who Smells Like Fish. According to IMDB the writer/director's previous credits where as a location assistant. When questioned about this stupidity TeleFilm responds with, well we do that for "talent building."

I could write volumes about the moronic polices at TeleFilm, the sooner the entire agency is shut down the better.

Scraping TeleFilm and increasing the federal tax credit for Canadian films from 25-30% would be a much better idea, and fair for all producers in Canada.

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#11 Rex Orwell

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 12:39 AM

In addition it would be nice to see figures.

Up to now this 'story' is based around vague statements, unqualified opinion and provocative language.

I understand that's exactly what it's designed to do, provoke a reaction, but specifics re spending, examples of budgets and gross for individual productions and comparison with the same specifics regarding lottery funding as opposed to public funding would be important for me to begin to take this publicity stunt seriously. Or by 'public funding' do they mean lottery funding?

The television license (which the public is under no obligation of law to pay) would be a much better vehicle for criticism in my view.

If the public were consulted, I'm sure funding the film industry wouldn't come very high on their list of grievous examples of how their money is being wasted on a daily basis through decisions made by the unelected I'm certain. In fact, I'd be very surprised if it was on anybody's radar.
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#12 Freya Black

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 06:22 PM

Of course.

And the wider issue is that even if we do make populist material, it's almost impossible to have it distributed.


populist material?


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#13 Richard Boddington

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 07:07 PM

That's both brilliant and hilarious Freya!!

So much of that translates perfectly into the Canadian model of publicly funded movies.

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#14 Daniel Jackson

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 07:10 AM

More Brideshead Regurgitated then.
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#15 Frank Glencairn

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 11:44 AM

"UK industry to create films people actually want to watch"

Good Lord! What a revolutionary idea.

You guys think this really works?

;-)

Frank
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#16 Brian Hulnick

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Posted 07 March 2012 - 05:17 AM

Probably not. UK movies seem to get pigeon holed into well specified genres.
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#17 Daniel Jackson

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 09:29 AM

Period drama starring Colin Firth, Gangster Movies starring Ray Winstone, Romantic Comedy starring Hugh Grant. great
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#18 Adrian Samuals

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 08:07 AM

Maybe the UK film makers should collaborate with the US studios initially then once they gain market share go it alone.
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#19 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 08:56 AM

Maybe the UK film makers should collaborate with the US studios initially then once they gain market share go it alone.


They already do (also many times in the past), the problem is that the studios tend to retain the profits, it doesn't tend to get re-invested back into UK films.
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#20 Bill DiPietra

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 10:59 AM

They already do (also many times in the past), the problem is that the studios tend to retain the profits, it doesn't tend to get re-invested back into UK films.


US filmmakers could learn a lot from not only UK filmmakers, but foreign filmmakers in general. An example is the American version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Although Jeff Cronenweth's cinematography is admirable, I for one prefer the simplicity of Eric Kress's work in the Swedish version. It isn't nearly as stylized (very little color mixing) and it didn't need to be since the story was engaging enough. No need to jazz it up visually.

In my opinion, there was no need to make an American version in the first place other than for box office profits. Another example of US studios re-inventing the wheel.
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