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Boyle says UK Film industry audience's fault

DannyBoyle.jpgDanny Boyle has been commenting on the state of the UK film industry, and he openly stated that it was the film industry that we deserved, mainly because we don't go to the cinema like other countries.

Thankfully it's so cut and dried as that and nothing to do with incentives, skills, companies, or most importantly the absolute sea of rubbish films being poured into the cinema these days, isn't that something to do with it?

I believe someone once said something about supply and demand being an important model in business, and looking at the cinema releases of late is it any surprise that the UK cinema audience don't attend more than an Indian audience? The Indian audience are mainly attending films made by their burgeoning film industry, one that's running much bigger, better and very differently to Hollywood, is that really a fair comparison?

No wonder cinema attendance is better there. If our industry were churning out the amount of films, and the films that people wanted to see, then there would be a much better audience to attend.

Is Danny Boyle really suggesting that we should pay to watch rubbish films multiple times a week in order to invest in the UK film industry? What films in the cinema just now are ploughing money back into the UK film industry? Probably Quantum of Solace is the one that's doing the most, and even then when you look at the list of companies behind it they're out numbered by the non-UK ones.

Talking at the London Film Festival through WENN and IMDB Boyle says:

“My opinion about the film industry is we get the film industry we deserve really. ... We don't go to the cinema like other countries I'm afraid. You notice it in India the obsession with cinema is phenomenal. Everybody knows everything about it and everyone has seen everything. I think the figures are we go twice a year and that will be to the [Harry] Potter and the [James] Bond [movies] mostly...”

No, I'm afraid like with any other business model, the company has to produce the goods to get the customers, you don't get customers appearing to give you money for rubbish in order for you to make a decent product somewhere down the line, which they'll pay for again.

It's funny, there are plenty of strong independent British film-makers and talent out there, but they just aren't being given the chance or being allowed to make films in a larger market that aren't deemed the standard British film of that time – once romantic bumbling comedy, now comedy-horror, what next?

As a closing, good luck to Mark Stirton and the other British film-makers appearing at the British Independent Film Awards under The Raindance Award. While the rest of the awards are dominated by films such as Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire, Son of Rambow, In Bruges, Hunger and Somers Town, this award shows the truly independent and fighting film-makers.

British film-makers like Mark Stirton, ignored by groups like Scottish Screen that should be funding and promoting them, are making private overseas DVD distribution deals in order to get the film seen. Why aren't films like his One Day Removals getting shown in cinemas in the UK? Is it still the audience's fault?



Danny Boyle is stuck so far up his own arse he can't even see whats on at the Cinema.

Cinema's in this country are such an awful experience being mainly in run down buildings or tacky multiplexes which will never get there greedy hands on my money, that and 99% of what they show is generic yank rubbish.

Mmm. Can I join in? As one of the directors being ignored or not as the case may be. Danny Boyle has my total respect by the way, he's contently managed to put bums on seats and that's no bad thing. But the problem is far deeper.

I spoke with many directors at Raindance and it was the same problem. time after time. 'Getting in!!'

Sure, we can get films on at festivals, even good ones like Raindance, but that's not part of the film industry. Time and time again I heard the same stories about not getting distribution, not being able to get an agent, no funding available.
How is new talent meant to flourish under those circumstances? I've been nominated for a BIFA - think that means I'll get an agent? Not a chance matey. Agents represent financial success, not talent. Get a deal and you'll get an agent. Getting a deal that's worth anything means working for a studio and working for a studio means more generic film making. So the idea of originality or independent storytelling is lost right at the start.

The Scottish Screen question is harder. I have been pretty rude about them in the past. But then, they've been pretty useless in the past. The biggest most fundamental problem Scottish Screen has is that they don't have the best interests of the Scottish film industry in mind. It's a system based on arse kissing, so the guys who get the gigs are usually the biggest arse kissers and not the best film makers. Actually, I've met a few - they really are. Again, there are exceptions - like The Inheritance which was very good. But in the main, it's the same old Scottish Screen crap that no-one would want to sit through without a stiff drink and maybe an anti-depressant.

A major TV producer once told me that the industry proper regards Scottish Screen as a joke. This depressed to be honest. I take no joy in the fact that our main body of help for new film makers is regarded as a joke. Scottish Screen could be great, should be great. But until they actually start looking for proper talent and not just some mate called Nigel who knows Jeff who knows Kate, but doesn't know which bit of a camera to look into, then we'll get more of the same. Which is why I'm not doing anymore Scottish films. Also, they could do with developing a sense of humour! Scotland is a funny place! Anyone get that from Scottish Screen output? No, me nether.

My new film is going to be launched, from London pretty soon. It's called 'Good Guys vs Bad Guys' and is designed to be a sure fire box office hit. I am launching and filming in London with a name cast. How am I going to get on? I might crash and burn? I might end up homeless with a bag of DVDs that no-one wants? Or I might launch a major British action film? Shall we see what happens? I've got a bag of good reviews, a great idea and a BIFA nomination. What do you think? I might at least get a few meetings... which is more than I'll get from Scottish Screen.

Gosh look at me going on! See what happens when you mention me in a bit. And I still haven't bought a suit for the awards - I'm such a scruffbag!


That's interesting getting the inside view of it all Mark. I wonder what plans you have to try and bridge that gap from festivals to industry earner, or perhaps you don't and are quite happy where you are?

Scotland is difficult to market, especially when so many, and not just Scottish Screen and cinema, are content to market it on the old outside view of Scotland. Still I think some films are making the breakthrough, yours included.

I think I should pick your brains more in some form of interview, I know that the readers would love to hear more from the non-Hollywood insider viewpoint.

Let me know when you're back from being famous and award laden...hopefully!


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