London 's Mayor Boris Johnson has pledged new legislation to make filming in the capital easier and greater investment in grassroots film-making across the capital. The promises have been set out as part of a new set of priorities for Film London, the capital's film and media agency.
At a summit held today, October 22, at London's City Hall, Johnson announced new powers to the London Local Authorities and Transport Act 2008 to minimise traffic disruption during shoots. It is hoped that the legislation, which will be monitored by London local authorities, will boost London's competitiveness as a filming centre.
The Mayor also promised to double the funding for the London Borough Film Fund Challenge to £100,000. The scheme, which has so far seen Film London working with 15 London boroughs to make over a 100 films, will now be extended to all 33 local authorities as a result of the additional funding.
In addition Johnson also revealed plans for a one day celebration dedicated to film - London Film Day - aimed at giving Londoners more opportunity to engage with films through a range of screenings and educational events.
Directors Michael Winterbottom and Gurinder Chadha, and producers Tim Bevan, Andrew Macdonald and Barnaby Spurrier were among the industry figures taking part in the discussion at City Hall today. Others included Film London Chief Executive Adrian Wootton, and key cinema exhibitors and post production houses in the capital.
The summit coincides with this year's Times BFI London Film Festival. The Mayor of London Gala screening of Michael Winterbottom's Genova is taking place tonight as part of the festival and the Mayor is also hosting 'London Loves', a programme of free film screenings in Trafalgar Square on 23 and 24 October.
'It's no surprise that our capital has become one of the top production centres in the world. My job is to help keep it that way and I'm determined that this film summit will signal the start of a highly productive relationship with a sector that has brought income, jobs, and a lot of pleasure to London', said Johnson.
Film London's CEO, Adrian Wootton said 'This is a massively important industry to our city, with huge potential to increase business opportunities across a whole range of areas'. He added 'The wonderful thing about today's announcements is there is good news for everyone, those on the ground working on productions, Londoners looking to break into the industry and those who simply love watching films'.