The Co-production Express,presented by the UK MEDIA Desk, the UK Film Council (UKFC), and the Times bfi London Film Festival, was clearly intended to fosterfuture UK co-productions with the rest of Europe, yet foreign producers say theproposed new tax regime - currently still up in the air -- could make thatnearly impossible.
When the discussion turnedto the proposed higher level of UK spend to get a meaningful amount of taxbreaks, Belgian producer Sebastien Delloye of Entre Chien et Loup noted that such a system would be "nonsense unlessyou're doing a British film." "We will never come back," he snapped, "It meanshalf the production companies working in the
JJ Lousberg,the European and International Production Executive at the UKFC tried to calmnerves by saying that "it's important not to get carried away at this moment"before the new laws are set.
UKFC head John Woodward toldScreenDaily.com after the event thatthe body was working to ensure that co-productions, including minorityco-productions, would be protected under the new DCMS plans. "We've proposed tothe government that minority co-productions with a low spend in the
Lousberg added, "Everyone in the industry agrees that withoutco-productions the government won't be able to reach its goals." He sees thefuture being more about natural creative collaborations, rather than workingwith a country simply for its financing deals.
In his opening remarks, Woodwardhad noted that the government was clearly unhappy that under the currentsystem, a co-production could spend just 12-14% of its budget in the
The seminar presented aseries of case-studies of international productions representing a variety ofstructures and motivations: for example, five-country production Joyeux
One of the event's mostcandid speakers was Neil Peplow from London-based TheWorks Media Group, who joked that film production had become so complicatedthat he was considering a career as a plumber instead.
Peplow's co-production being presented was
Peplow wasn't only talking about the headaches of workingoutside borders, he also was quick to praise the "fantastic"mostly Hungarian crew the production employed. IldikoKemeny of The Hungarian Connection noted that it isabout 25% cheaper to shoot in
In a more positive point,Tomas Eskilsson from
"The film industry future in