Jonathan Gems on the abolition of the UKFC

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Screen East goes bust with allegations of embezzlement!

The government-backed agency announced Thursday that it would be shuttering its operations after employee Melvin Welton was arrested by local police on suspicion of theft.

Chief executive Laurie Hayward told local press that "the company is insolvent and can't meet its debts as they fall due."

Read more here: http://www.variety.c...+Latest+News%29
 
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Very many people on the point of talking to the police about Screen WM but just hoping that the Culture Secretary lets the axe fall so that we can move forward and get major inward investment and jobs in the West Midlands. If not then Variety may have a follow up story.
 
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More people writing to PM, Deputy PM, Chancellor, First Secretary to The Treasury, Culture Secretary and Creative Industries Minister calling for removal of monies and official lead agency status of regional film quangos. They are officially 'lead agency for film, tv and digital media'.

See here:

http://filmutopia.ty...dustry-lgm.html

But alas the Culture Department were describing Screen East as 'excellent' just before the police busted them last week...and describing other notorious regional screen quangos as better than 'excellent'. Not looking like they will set the regions free of these oppressive bodies.

http://filmutopia.po...ood-riddance-to

http://www.savethebr...nd-film-makers/
 
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The Creative Industries Minister having a beauty contest between four to take over UK Film Council row : BBC; Channel 4; Film London; BFI.

What was this role ?

http://www.savethebr...-the-bond-girl/

Well as official LEADER of The UK Film Industry with an avowed policy of attracting in Hollywood inward investment to create jobs here, it just might ask a few questions which UKFC did not.

1. What happens if the owners of over 50% of the shares in Pinewood Shepperton plc decide to sell off the 60 acre Shepperton in west London for around £1.5 billion and 108 acres Pinewood for around £2 billion. The plc annual profits this year will be under £3 million from a £40 million turnover(as they do not invest in films but just rent out facilities to Hollywood Studios for things like pirates of The caribbean and X Men). Good job that the majority of Pinewood Shepperton plc shareholdings are not held by property developers such as John Whittaker. Yeah right !

So £3 billion this year or £3 million ?....Only committed passionate patriotic film makers would choose the latter. Alas we do not own over 50% shares in Pinewood Shepperton plc.

2. By what means could a sell off of the main 34 sound stages (including all the big ones Hollywood need) be stopped ?

3. If the Pinewood sound stages are sold off by 2012-13 as 80% of Elstree was sold off after 'Star Wars' and 'Raiders of The Lost Ark' by property developers, what happens to the nonsense strategy being discussed by Ed Vaizey and the beauty contestants.

4. Why have Pinewood sold its brandname to Germany, Malaysia, Canada and soon to be announced China in the last 12 months ? Expect the China announcement in mid December when it can be buried by busy newsdesks doing Christmas stories.

5. Why is a 6 year old property company which is selling its brandname to nations competing with British based film making advising Ed Vaizey on what is best for British based film making ?

6. Why is a 6 year old property company gearing up to sell off its British assets (and using its salesmen to book in Hollywood orders for its Third world clients) advising The British Government on what is in The british interest ?

7. Why did The UKFC and Pinewood Shepperton plc (who co-commissioned the infamous report earlier this year) both seek the UK tax credit to apply to films made in China, Malaysia and Canada ?

8. Why did UKFC and Pinewood Shepperton plc ensure no sound stages were built outside The south-east on the plentiful cheap lands available which are ideal for sound stages, backlots and sets ?

9. Elstree's 6 sound stages are booked for 2 years in advance by Hollywood. Once Pinewood and Shepperton are sold off, where will the other Hollywood money go ?

10. Any chance of another letter to The Telegraph by 50 luvvies (42 of which will not get work permits in Malaysia) ? A postcard from Steven Spielberg and Clint Eastwood from their film sets in Malaysia ?

An Observor article by Armando Ianucci that 'the glue which held The UK film industry together' was in fact the sound stages Hollywood needed to make big budget movies NOT UKFC bureaucrats, NOT tax credits, NOT Lottery subsidies etc

11. Any chance then that Jonathan Gems and Jon Williams might get to meet the Creative Industries Minister to discuss quotas ? Or that we can get sound stages built outside the south-east ?

http://www.savethebr...-the-bond-girl/
 
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