Global TV and film audiences recognise ‘Britishness’ as mark of high-quality

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Research commissioned by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s UK Global Screen Fund has shown that UK film and TV play a vital role in influencing positive international opinion of the country and attracting global viewers to visit our world-famous locations and landmarks.

Nearly three-quarters (70%) of global audiences recognise “Britishness” as a mark of high-quality, with a third (30%) of adults saying that British film and television influences their view of the UK which is a testament to the sector’s ability to showcase British talent with international success.

The research across 15 international territories also showed the positive impact of producing films and TV series in the UK. Two-thirds (66%) of people who have previously visited the country said that seeing British locations and landmarks in film or TV influenced their decision, showing the huge indirect impact of the UK screen sectors on other parts of our economy, including tourism and hospitality.

This valuable research comes as nine more co-productions are set to receive a share of £1.32 million from the £7 million UK Global Screen Fund, administered by the BFI. Supporting UK producers to become partners in international feature films, animations and documentaries, this funding is increasing their ability to reach international audiences, creating more skilled jobs, and boosting the long-term reach of UK content on a global scale.

Minister for the Creative Industries, Julia Lopez, said:

The UK independent production industry is world-leading, consistently serving up innovative, creative and inspirational content for big and small screens that wow audiences across the globe.

Thanks to our brilliant UK Global Screen Fund, we are helping to create skilled jobs and boosting the UK’s international influence, which has a positive knock-on impact on tourism and the wider economy.

The nine productions benefitting from the UK Global Screen Fund awards include The Miracle Club, a UK/Ireland official co-production starring Maggie Smith, Kathy Bates and Laura Linney, The Tutor, a UK/Germany official co-production, and Ghastly Ghoul, a UK/Ireland TV animation.

Previously announced grant recipients include My Happy Ending, a UK/Israel official co-production, starring Miriam Margolyes and Andie MacDowell, which has recently wrapped production in Wales, and The Coop Troop, a UK/China/France animated co-production, which is now in the principal animation stage in Northern Ireland.

To further boost the international impact of UK film, television and video games, the UK Global Screen Fund has also supported the development of new branding to promote screen content around the world.

ScreenUK is an eye-catching and distinctive new brand to showcase and celebrate UK screen talent which will launch as a digital campaign, rolling out internationally over the coming months. Aiming to highlight high quality UK film, television and video games under a single brand banner, it will help distinguish and promote British content to international audiences.

Neil Peplow, Director of International, BFI said:

This extensive global research shaped how the new brand ScreenUK was developed, giving us valuable insights into how people around the world see us. When it comes to creativity and storytelling, the UK consistently produces outstanding talent and content and this report underlines how influential the UK film, tv and games sectors are on the global stage. We now have a huge opportunity to build on this reputation and show the full breadth, diversity and innovation we can offer to audiences, and support our screen businesses to succeed internationally.

Adeel Akhtar, star of Ali and Ava, said:

British independent film, unlike any other independent film from around the world (…) feels like it does act as a window into reality. Whether you’re watching a Ken Loach film, or a Mike Leigh film, a Clio Barnard film, it’s almost like you can open up a window in those places, actually open a window, and experience what it’s like to be living in those areas in those parts of Britain.

Gugu Mbatha-Raw, star of Belle, said:

There’s so much heart and authenticity in British films because they’re often passion projects, they’re labours of love. There’s such a rich culture here, and such a deep culture of storytelling.

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