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26/06/13 16:13

New opportunity for film, animation and TV

Tax relief encourages growing interest in filming in Scotland.

The Scottish Government will exploit every opportunity to establish Scotland as a global centre of excellence for film making, animation and television production, Fiona Hyslop said today.

Speaking ahead of a reception she will host tonight for film makers, industry representatives, funders and sponsors, the Culture Secretary said the government is firmly committed to doing all it can to support a sustained increase in production, including through the film studio delivery group set up to actively pursue proposals for a new film and TV studio .

Expanding on the vision she set out in her recent major speech on culture and heritage and what it means for film and television, Fiona Hyslop said:

“The Scottish Government values the contribution that film making, animation and television production makes to the economy and importantly, to Scotland’s rich cultural life, and we are firmly committed to supporting a sustained increase in production.

“These are very exciting times for the audio visual sector. Scottish Ministers called repeatedly for some years for the UK Government to introduce tax relief for the sector. Now that, finally, those calls have been met, we are already seeing an encouraging growth of interest in making television drama in Scotland.

“We intend to take full advantage of the opportunity this brings, not just for domestic production prospects, but for inward investment too. A sustained increase in production that encourages a sector of greater critical mass can benefit us all.

“As I set out in my Talbot Rice lecture earlier this month, we have much to gain by welcoming those who want to come to Scotland to create - not just because they will bring jobs and investment – but because, most importantly, we value their cultural contribution.

“If we want to welcome those from outside Scotland, we need somewhere to welcome them to – and that is why we have stepped up efforts to work with the commercial sector on film and television production facilities. Clearly there will need to be a business case for any development, but the new television tax relief has brought a fresh impetus here.

“We are investing in the development of Scotland’s future film making talent – for example through the ground breaking partnership I set up earlier this year between Mark Andrews, Director of the Oscar winning movie Brave, and students at the Glasgow School of Art.

“And this year alone we have awarded £110,000 to support the Edinburgh International Film Festival’s work to develop emerging film makers through its Talent Lab programme – taking the total funding awarded to the festival to more than £700,000 since the Expo Fund was established six years ago.

“This is precisely the sort of positive action this government will continue to deliver for Scottish film, animation and television.

“Only Independence would give Scotland full control over tax powers and the opportunity to offer our own tax incentives to enhance the competitive edge of our creative industries on the international stage.”

Notes to editors

Fiona Hyslop will host a reception at Edinburgh Castle this evening to mark the 67th Edinburgh International Film Festival.

More than 80 production companies and 300 facilities companies are based in Scotland and an average of 15-20 feature films are shot in Scotland every year. Scotland attracts between £20-25 million of location spend each year from production companies shooting on location all over the country. Recent examples have been the Brad Pitt film, ‘World War Z’ shot in Glasgow, and ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ taking advantage of locations in The Highlands. Creative Scotland estimate that film tourism [in Scotland] accounts for 10 per cent of the total value of tourism to the British economy – about £1.8 billion a year.

The Scottish Government has awarded £710,000 over six years through the Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund to support the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

The British Film Commission and Creative Scotland hosted a visit by six major American companies at the end of April.

Creative Scotland is currently conducting a film sector review. The review will look at film in all its aspects in Scotland. A report will be published later this year following an open period of consultation.

For more on the Mark Andrews collaboration with Glasgow School of Art, see: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/News/Releases/2013/04/Brave10042013

For more on the Scottish Government’s Expo Funding support for the Edinburgh International Film Festival, see: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/News/Releases/2013/04/filmmaking12042013

For more on the film studio delivery group, see:
http://www.scotland.gov.uk/News/Releases/2013/05/film23052013