Pic coin grows at Channel 4

Government tells Brit pubcaster to back more pics

Hybrid British pubcaster Channel 4 is upping the annual budget of its film financing division, Film4, by 20% to £10 million ($15 million) this year.

The hike returns it to its 2008 level before the economic downturn.

The cash injection comes after the government passed the Digital Economy Act into law in April, which imposed a legal commitment on the broadcaster, which is state owned but funded by advertising, to invest in its film financing division.

Channel 4 CEO David Abraham said the company was “delighted” the law acknowledged the channel’s increased expectations, and added that “investment in British film will continue to sit at the heart of Channel 4’s public service mission.”

Tessa Ross, controller of Film4 and Channel 4 Drama, added, “Film has always been in the DNA of Channel 4, but this added protection, through the extended remit, comes at a time when this significant part of our British culture is in need of protection.

“To be able to commit an extra £2 million each year to filmmakers and to work that we care about gives us great hope for the future.”

Film4 is one of three major public funding bodies in the U.K. that invest in local fare: the U.K. Film Council’s newly unified film fund invests an annual $22.8 million of lottery money into Brit pics, while BBC Films invests around $18 million a year.

Film4 recently backed two features in official selection at this year’s Cannes Film Festival: Mike Leigh’s “Another Year,” which is competing for the Palme d’Or and Hideo Nakata’s “Chatroom,” which is in Un Certain Regard.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Biz News from Variety