As a Scot who produced his first movie, “Human Traffic,” about the Cardiff rave scene back in 1998, Allan Niblo well knows there’s cinematic life beyond London.
Vertigo Films, the North London-based production and distribution company in which he now partners with James Richardson, Rupert Preston and Nick Love, has carved itself a lucrative niche making edgy, low-budget movies outside the Soho sensibility that dominates the British film industry.
And that often means venturing out into the regions to shoot, where costs are lower, the people are more forthcoming and the accent can lend a distinctive flavor to the story.
“The regions do present alternative voices,” he says, “and they can provide a lot more enthusiasm and commitment about providing locations or extras, which can otherwise get expensive when you’re making low-budget movies.”
Last year, Vertigo went to Northern Ireland to make Tom Shankland’s debut movie, “WAZ,” a drama set entirely in the U.S., for which it used the derelict Belfast docklands. Vertigo has just finished “Dogging: A Love Story” in Newcastle, up in the far northeast of England, an unconventional romance about casual sex in public places.
Now it’s looking for regional locations to shoot “Bronson,” based on the true story of Blighty’s most violent prisoner; and “Fainthearts,” a comedy about men who re-enact historic battles.
“Screen West Midlands is very interested in that, so we could use a lot of Birmingham accents, which would add humor,” Niblo says.