Film Focus cuts will hurt film industry

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We are writing to protest in the strongest terms the plans to reduce Edinburgh’s Film Focus office to a single film officer.

We are leading members of the film and television community and Film Focus is vital to the work we do.

The office has been in operation since 1990, and the two current officers have ­detailed and specialist knowledge of what producers need when choosing to work in and around ­Edinburgh.

We have read the statements from Marketing Edinburgh that its organisation is fully equipped to take over Film Focus’s responsibilities.

In the first instance, no production wants to work with a team called “Marketing”. Marketing the city is a by-product of what we do.

Any film team needs ­privacy and specialist help in co-ordinating the many and varied requirements that filming demands.

Marketing Edinburgh as a tourism, conference and event destination is vastly different to promoting it as a film and television location.

The two existing staff members, with their in-depth industry knowledge, are able to respond quickly to location briefs, logistical briefs and the crazy, left-field issues that can come from a film or 
television production.

These dedicated staff members have personal industry relationships that they have built up over years and cutting the film office budget will send a signal to the industry in the UK and worldwide that Edinburgh is no longer committed to having a film and television industry.

Film and TV projects come here because there is a good film office.

Edinburgh attracts international productions that use the city’s spectacular locations. But producers want a film office that will protect and support their work, not a marketing team.

As Scottish-based producers, we have relied on Film Focus to facilitate our production needs. We strongly object to key decisions about our industry being made without the industry’s participation.

We need Film Focus and we are well served by Film Focus.

With all due respect, this decision is short-sighted, and does not serve our industry.

We would welcome, as a matter of urgency, the ­opportunity to meet with those responsible for this ­decision.

Steven Abercromby-Cook

Little City Pictures

Catherine Aitken

Producer

Hamish Allison

Freakworks

Philippa Atterton

Line Producer

David Brown

Line producer

Andrea Calderwood

Slate Films

Eric Coulter

Surefire Television

Mark Cousins

Filmmaker

Katie Crook

Blue Iris Films

Emma Davie

Scottish Documentary Institute

Claire Deas

Freakworks

Eddie Dick

Makar Productions

Douglas Dougan

Fluid Eye Productions

Douglas Eadie

Pelicula Films

Yasmin Fedda

Reel Festivals

Martin Fisher

Visible Ink Television

Tina Foster

Plum Films

Cameron Fraser

KoLik Films

Andrea Gibb

Screenwriter

Olivia Gifford

Blue Iris Films

Mally Graveson

Hee Haw Digital

Lizzie Gray

Producer, Waterloo Road, Shed Media

Helen Gregory

Ruby Film and Television

Stuart Greig

Dressing Room 6 
Productions

Annie Griffin

Pirate Productions

Wendy Griffin

Producer

Murray Grigor

Grigor Films

Cassian Hall

One-Eyed Dog

Pamela Hansson

Stargazer Productions

Virginia Heath

VKH Films

Jim Hickey

Freedonia Films

Paddy Higson

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Leslie Hills

Skyline Productions

Brian Kaczynski

Producer

Grant Keir

Faction North

Andy Maas

Freak Films

Micky MacPherson

Plum Films

Clare Kerr

Mead Kerr Productions

Patricia Mackenzie

Sorbier Productions/

Sorbier Films

Margaret Matheson

Producer

James Mavor

Screenwriter

Morag McKinnon

Scottish Documentary Institute

Noe Mendelle

Scottish Documentary Institute

Justin Molotnikov

Synchronicity Films

Claire Mundell

Synchronicity Films

Angela Murray

Imagine Films

Gill Parry

Connect Film

Anna Rathband

Freak Films

Jemma Rodgers

Kudos Film and Television

Lili Sandelin

North Isle Productions

Alastair Scott

20/20 Productions

Iain Smith

Applecross Productions

Nigel Smith

Forged Films

Karen Smyth

La Belle Allee

Productions

Ben Soper

Baillie Gifford and Co

Toby Stevens

Avalon Entertainment

Lynsey Stewart

Producer

Jennifer Stoddart

Lichen Films

Toby Trueman

Hee Haw Digital

Julia Valentine

Cacti Films

Oscar van Heek

Oscar Films

Alan J Wands

Producer

Richard Warden

Middlefish Films

Samantha Wynne

20/20 Productions

Jenny Williams

Pirate Productions

Michael Wilson

Line Producer

Chris Young

Young Films

Nicki Young

Sugartree Productions