Film Focus cuts will hurt film industry

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Steven Abercromby-Cook

Little City Pictures

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Catherine Aitken

Producer

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Hamish Allison

Freakworks

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Philippa Atterton

Line Producer

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David Brown

Line producer

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Andrea Calderwood

Slate Films

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Eric Coulter

Surefire Television

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Mark Cousins

Filmmaker

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Katie Crook

Blue Iris Films

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Emma Davie

Scottish Documentary Institute

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Claire Deas

Freakworks

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Eddie Dick

Makar Productions

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Douglas Dougan

Fluid Eye Productions

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Douglas Eadie

Pelicula Films

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Yasmin Fedda

Reel Festivals

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Martin Fisher

Visible Ink Television

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Tina Foster

Plum Films

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Cameron Fraser

KoLik Films

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Andrea Gibb

Screenwriter

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Olivia Gifford

Blue Iris Films

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Mally Graveson

Hee Haw Digital

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Lizzie Gray

Producer, Waterloo Road, Shed Media

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Helen Gregory

Ruby Film and Television

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Stuart Greig

Dressing Room 6 
Productions

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Annie Griffin

Pirate Productions

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Wendy Griffin

Producer

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Murray Grigor

Grigor Films

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Cassian Hall

One-Eyed Dog

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Pamela Hansson

Stargazer Productions

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Virginia Heath

VKH Films

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Jim Hickey

Freedonia Films

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Paddy Higson

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

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Leslie Hills

Skyline Productions

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Brian Kaczynski

Producer

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Grant Keir

Faction North

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Andy Maas

Freak Films

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Micky MacPherson

Plum Films

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Clare Kerr

Mead Kerr Productions

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Patricia Mackenzie

Sorbier Productions/

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Sorbier Films

Margaret Matheson

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Producer

James Mavor

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Screenwriter

Morag McKinnon

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Scottish Documentary Institute

Noe Mendelle

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Scottish Documentary Institute

Justin Molotnikov

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Synchronicity Films

Claire Mundell

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Synchronicity Films

Angela Murray

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Imagine Films

Gill Parry

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Connect Film

Anna Rathband

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Freak Films

Jemma Rodgers

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Kudos Film and Television

Lili Sandelin

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North Isle Productions

Alastair Scott

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20/20 Productions

Iain Smith

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Applecross Productions

Nigel Smith

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Forged Films

Karen Smyth

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La Belle Allee

Productions

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Ben Soper

Baillie Gifford and Co

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Toby Stevens

Avalon Entertainment

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Lynsey Stewart

Producer

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Jennifer Stoddart

Lichen Films

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Toby Trueman

Hee Haw Digital

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Julia Valentine

Cacti Films

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Oscar van Heek

Oscar Films

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Alan J Wands

Producer

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Richard Warden

Middlefish Films

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Samantha Wynne

20/20 Productions

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Jenny Williams

Pirate Productions

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Michael Wilson

Line Producer

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Chris Young

Young Films

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Nicki Young

Sugartree Productions