England is busily organising its new filming support structure, while traditional global filming hub California has revealed a general production increase for 2011, despite a massive fourth-quarter dip. Elsewhere, Peter Jackson’s hobbit films completed their first stage of location filming and news broke that Kodak may soon file for bankruptcy.
Creative England has been launched as the country’s official film servicing organisation, which is the first time a unified body of this kind has been available in England. The problem at the moment is that there’s still a lack of clarity about who’s responsible for what when it comes to filming support and resources in England and the wider UK.
The UK now seems to have an over-complicated film funding and support set-up with multiple agencies and organisations apparently sharing overlapping responsibilities.
The British Film Commission was launched in late 2011 and will co-exist alongside the British Film Institute and Film London. It’s in fact a division of Film London, only with a national remit. In this light it seems like an over-complicated set-up with multiple agencies and organisations sharing overlapping responsibilities, which is ironic considering the UK Film Council was originally abolished in an official bid to streamline the funding and support process, and to make it more cost-effective.
In New Zealand Peter Jackson and his production army on the hobbit films have shed light on the location filming process as seen from the perspective of what’s surely the world’s biggest current shoot. In stark contrast to many of his filmmaking contemporaries, Jackson’s always been very open about the production process. His latest video diary offers a great insight into the challenges of location filming for a big-budget shoot that’s still in principal photography and is the kind of thing we’d like to see more of.
Despite once being a giant of the photographic equipment industry, Kodak hasn’t been able to adapt to the digital revolution in recent years, instead falling victim to the popularity of cheap digital cameras and camera phones.
In a sign of the changing times, reports have surfaced in the last few days that Kodak is facing bankruptcy. Despite once being a giant of the photographic equipment industry, the firm hasn’t been able to adapt to the digital revolution in recent years, instead falling victim to the popularity of cheap digital cameras and camera phones. Then there’s the growing preference among filmmakers to shoot digitally as well.
Kodak’s decline shows that now more than ever before companies need to be able to quickly adapt and diversify to the changing world. Either that or take inspiration from firms like Apple and actually be the ones instigating the change in the first place. With low production costs and flexible operation being two of the most important elements of modern filmmaking, it’s the companies championing digital photography who are most likely to succeed.
Feature and TV location filming declined in California as other states offered better deals and studio filming became preferential to those that remained.
Over in the US end-of-year figures showed a small rise in California location filming, but the good news only really applied to the state’s commercials industry. Feature and TV location filming declined as other states offered better deals and studio filming became preferential to those that remained. Keeping TV production is California’s biggest concern at the moment and the industry will need to convince the state to offer long-term incentives if they’re to compete with New York.
As always, The Location Guide’s Film-Friendly Locations database continues to grow. If you manage a building or a location that you think qualifies as film-friendly, or you’ve filmed somewhere recently that you think should be listed on our website, please contact Ewa.
If you've been working on location anywhere in the world and you're looking for some press coverage, please contact Nick. We’d all be happy to hear from you.
(Image copyright: Warner Brothers)
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