Film news from around the web…

August 13

Universal ‘offering to reimburse’ American cinemas for security on Compton film
Studio aiming to assure audience ‘peace of mind’ following recent cinema attacks, current racial tensions and the film’s subject matter.
Wall Street Journal

Naspers beats Netflix to the punch in South Africa
S.A. based internet and media group to launch VOD service across multiple territories ahead of Netflix’s planned international expanisons.
Screen Africa

Thai Cabinet approves rebate to lure foreign blockbusters
Thailand to approve a 15% rebate, with further incentives contingent on portraying Thailand favorably, and hiring local actors.
Bangkok Post

August 12

Viacom loses $3.4 on buyback scheme
Paramount owner’s share price currently trading over $13 below average price it has paid for own stock.

Star Trek Beyond rumored to be casting in Dubai
Franchise supposedly behind open call that has gone out in the region, ahead of film’s September start date.
Arabian Business

Indian State’s government waves tax on film
Audiences exempted from entertainment tax for third time this year, on grounds film supports ‘family values.’
Business Standard

August 11

DCM buoyed by blockbuster film successes
Following advertising revenue growth of 21% across Q1 and Q2, Digital Cinema Media eyes more targeted ads and a push into the foyer.
The Drum

Nokia to enter VR space with camera for ‘content creators’
The company has also launched a contest to encourage filmmakers to utilise Virtual Reality in narrative entertainment.
International Business Times

State of Karnataka caught in dubbing debate
Competition Commission of India’s decision to penalize media organizations that prevent dubbing has reignited discussion about protecting local film industry.
Citizen Matters Bangalore

August 10

South Korean box office showing ‘year-on-year increase of 16.3%’
July’s ‘comeback’ saw both admissions and revenue rise over last year, as locally produced films drive audience attendance.
Film Business Asia

President calls on all Nigerians to ‘join hands’ against film piracy
Muhammadu Buhari pledges regulatory bodies will be ‘repositioned’ to protect the industry and diversify Nigeria’s economy in face of ‘dwindling’ oil prices.
All Africa

Unreleased Jerry Lewis ‘concentration camp’ film acquired by US Library of Congress
The Day The Clown Cried will remain embargoed for a further ten years, per Lewis’ request.
AV Club

August 7

Former BKKIFF President prosecuted
Juthamas Siriwan has been indicted for awarding festival contracts in return for $1.8 million in bribes.
Filmbiz Asia

Noé’s Love re-certificated during French release
Controversy erupts in France after Gaspar Noé’s latest has it’s rating increased after three weeks on release.
The Guardian

Pittsburgh Film Office pushing for five-year plan
Pittsburgh Film Office is advocating for a five year tax credit guarantee to ensure long term investment from film industry.
Pittsburgh Business Times

Study: Women represent only 2% of Hollywood directors
New study from USC’s Annenberg School also reveals women are given less that 30% of speaking parts in Hollywood films.

UCLA Conference advises ‘Nollywood’
Californian film school advises 30 Nigerian film producers on managing their bourgeoning industry.
Voice of America

August 4

Australian Pay TV to take on piracy
Following the swift passing of site-blocking laws in June, Foxtel has begun consulting lawyers about restricting access to hosts of pirated content.
ABC Online

New York State pays $38,000 per film job
Tax credit scheme defended against claims that it costs too much and does not generate enough new production to break even.

Pundits predict tech giants to reshape Chinese film industry
Industry analysts have suggested that Tencent’s involvement in Monster Hunt precipitates a restructuring of Chinese filmmaking around online demographic data.
South China Morning Post

“Dispicable” 40ft Minion obstructs Dublin traffic
Irish Police were called to deflate an escaped promotional inflatable that was blocking a busy road.
The Guardian

July 29

Police raid on Swedish film streaming site causes it to shut down  
Earlier this month police arrested the administrator of Swefilmer, one of Sweden’s popular streaming sites, after confiscating his computer equipment.
Business Insider

Australia’s copyright laws are “broken”, many claim
Strict copyright laws in Australia remain, even after the Australian Law Reform Commission called for a change in 2014.
The Conversation

Fugitive found after filming a low-budget horror film
A convicted armed bank robber has been recaptured by US marshals after he was spotted starring as a villain. 
Oregon Live

July 28

Three CBFC employees held for piracy leak
India’s Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has arrested three temporary employees who may have been pirating films for two years.
The Hindu

Highlands and Skye movie map for film-loving tourists
VisitScotland and Highland Council have created a map with about 50 filming locations in Scotland that have been featured in films such as Harry Potter, Braveheart, and Skyfall.
Scottish Express

Hawaii film tax credits draw productions to location
After boosting the tax credits to 20 percent when filming on Oahu and 25 percent on all neighboring islands as well as increasing the tax cap to $15m per production in 2013, it is estimated that the film industry has generated an extra $279m for Hawaii’s economy.
Hawaii News Now

July 27

UK box office sales up 10 percent in the first half of 2015
The British Film Institute released figures that stated 83 million tickets have been sold this year, bringing in $951m (£591m).

India doubles cost of shooting on trains
Indian Railways have increased the cost of filming on ‘special’ trains, going from $3600 (Rs 231,000) per day, to $7300 (Rs 474,000) per day, and other charges may be added depending on the speed of the train or if it is going uphill.  (
Times of India

Australian Department of Communications study on digital piracy releases results
A recent study found that 43 percent of Australian internet users over the age of 12 download copyrighted material.
PS News

July 23

Intellectual Property Office releases results
The Intellectual Property Office has just announced the results of a study that states one in five web users in the UK illegally stream or download music, television, and film.

New Zealand Film Office becomes part of Film Commission  
The country’s national film office and international marketing agency will be taken over by the New Zealand Film Commission, due to budget changes.
NZ Herald

Crew members on the set of ‘The Revenant’ describe it as ‘living hell’
Stories of frozen cameras and dragging extras through the snow surface as the budget climbs to $95m.
AV Club

July 22

Miramax explores sale
The film production company that made Dead Poets Society and Pulp Fiction may be worth up to $1 billion, after being sold for $660m in 2010.
Jewish Business News

Chinese films continue to see success
Films such as Monster Hunt, Monkey King: Hero is Back, and Pancake Man brought in $284m last week and continued to beat out foreign films.
LA Times

Spotlight on Mexican noir films from golden age
Mexican noir films from the golden age of Mexican cinema are being featured at the Museum of Modern Art. 
The Village Voice

July 21

3D printing creates new piracy concerns
As 3D printing increases in popularity, consumers are designing, printing, and selling their own merchandise and many worry that the film industry may suffer.
Wall Street Journal

New Chinese animated film breaks record
Monkey King: Hero Is Back’ has earned more than $50m at the box office, which is a new record for a Chinese animated film.

Adam Sandler responds to questions about ‘Ridiculous Six’ film
After a dozen Native American actors and a cultural advisor walked off the set of Sandler’s new movie due to the offensive script, Sandler has said it was a ‘misunderstanding.’
Huffington Post

July 20

Tourists detained in China for viewing Ghengis Khan documentary
Nine British citizens, ten South Africans, and an Indian National who viewed a BBC documentary about Genghis Khan were detained for watching what Chinese officials deemed ‘terrorist propaganda,’ and were later deported.

Pakistani film industry begins revival with Pashto and Urdu films
After years of Indian-film dominating cinema in Pakistan, many native filmmakers are beginning to produce films again.
Gulf News

Two-year program that aimed to improve creative industries ends
Ulster University’s Honeycomb-Creative Works programme has ended after delivering training and organizing networking and business support events for Northern Ireland, the six boarder counties of the Republic, and the Western Seaboard of Scotland.
Irish Times

Nova Scotia film and television incentives revamped
Nova Scotia’s new film and television incentives reduce the amount of money films must spend from $40,000 to $25,000 and introduces more incentives if films use local actors.


July 16

Sky broadband customers accused of pirating Robert Redford film receive legal letter
UK broadband customers have received letters from a mysterious US firm that invites them to pay a financial settlement to avoid further legal action.
The Guardian

Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary calls for Kenyan filmmakers to showcase culture
Secretary Amina Mohamed warns that the diverse Kenyan culture is at risk of being ‘eroded’ by the favoritism toward Western culture and films.
All Africa

Indonesian filmmakers seeking to tell the story of human rights violations meet threats
Many filmmakers and participants in the production of documentaries have received threats and have been forced to move to remote areas to ensure their safety.
The New York Times 

July 15

Irish Film Board to be renamed Screen Ireland
Minister Heather Humphries says the name change will reflect the organization’s growing audio visual sector.
UTV Ireland 

Sweden strives for gender equality in film and succeeds
The Swedish film industry saw the percentage of funded female producers rise from 26% to 50% in just two and a half years.

Korean films gain popularity with audiences
In the first half of 2015 Korean cinemagoers opted for Hollywood films, but Korean films are seeing a boost as the year continues.
Korea Herald

July 14

Filming tax cuts cause states to feel the loss of film industry business
Following cuts to tax breaks, the film industry has moved out of many states entirely. 

Harry Potter studio announces open casting call
The studio in London is looking for a girl aged eight to ten to play a ‘haunted young girl with an inner strength and stillness.’
Bristol Post

Suicide Squad has therapist on set for actors
The new Marvel film with darker tones has a therapist available for actors to make sure they ‘have their ground.’
Irish Independent

July 13

EU Parliament proposes ending geoblocking of online content
The E.U. Parliament has voted against the current content restriction laws and have called for a reform of E.U. copyright laws.  
Channel World

India’s biggest budget film takes off
Baahubali was intensely marketed, with state of the art special effects and a classic Indian film story, but many claim that its success stems from a $39m budget.  
BBC News

Actors Guild of Nigeria calls for an end to piracy
The Chairman of the AGN has called for producers and filmmakers to begin employing communications technologies to curb rampant piracy in the country.
News 24 Nigeria 

July 9

Alibaba stock falls to record low
China’s largest e-commerce company’s stock fell 0.8% yesterday, despite their recent ‘Mission: Impossible’ deal and the announcement of a online video streaming company that would serve Chinese markets.
South China Morning Post

New partnership grows out of lack of US film incentives 
Film offices in Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska have begun collaborating in order to make large-scale film productions possible in the region.
News OK

Casting of Marisa Tomei as ‘Aunt Mary’ generates criticism
Many are commenting that Tomei is “too young” to play Spider-Man’s aunt, and others say that this is evidence of Hollywood’s attitude towards age. 
The Guardian

July 8

Female academy members warn Oscars not to compromise quality for diversity
Two US Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences members say that the Oscars organizing body must be careful not to sacrifice standards simply to increase diversity.
The Guardian

IMAX plans to build theater in Nigeria
The first IMAX theater will be built in Lagos, home to over 20 million people, as IMAX continues to expand.
Global Trade Magazine

Study attempts to discover if 3D films make viewers dizzy
A recent study has found that 3D films do not necessarily contribute to any feelings of dizziness or nausea, and that any negative side effects may stem from viewers expectations. 
The Conversation

July 7

Smaller independent films are being swallowed up by large franchises
Filmmakers worry that independent films will soon be lost among the bigger Hollywood productions with large budgets and big-name actors.
Sydney Morning Herald  

New production facility proposed in New Zealand
Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development will have until October to create a plan for the studio, which would create more than 400 new jobs and bring in $483M over the next 25 years.
Radio NZ

New Chinese animated film ‘Autobots’ similar to Disney’s ‘Cars’
The new animated children’s film has been accused of copying the popular Disney franchise, down to both plot and design.

July 6

China releases films for 70th anniversary of end of WWII
Over the next three months, the Chinese government will release a number of documentaries, dramas, and animated programs in an effort to strengthen ‘nationalism and culture.’
Zee News

Tanzania’s film industry suffers due to poor sales, piracy
According to the Audio-Visual Works Distributor’s Association, a decline of nearly 50% has been documented due to piracy and online streaming. 

Silvercup Studios purchases Bronx property
The production company plans to build a 120,000 square foot production facility to expand the company and meet the growing demand for film and television in the area.
Wall Street Journal

July 2

Indian film market evaluates progress halfway through the year
Of the 100 films that Bollywood has released this year, eight of them have brought in a significant profit at the box office.
Micro Finance Monitor

MPAA comes under fire for “gifts” to U.S. embassies
Calls for an investigation into the donations that big Hollywood companies have given to the State Department.
The Daily Beast

New ‘London Has Fallen’ trailer receives criticism
Criticism after trailer that depicts an attack on the capital is released a week before the 10-year anniversary of the 7/7 bombings.
The Guardian

First extended trailer for Steve Jobs biopic is released
Michael Fassbender is ‘unrecognizable’ in his portrayal of the Apple creator.
Irish Central

July 1

Alibaba further invests in Chinese entertainment market
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., DMG Entertainment and Hunan Satellite Television are reportedly making a deal that will expand subscription-based internet in China, as well as cable and mobile entertainment.
The Wall Street Journal

Korean film industry returns post-MERS outbreak
Cinema attendance rates were reported to have returned to their previous numbers after the end of the recent MERS outbreak that caused film attendance to plummet and impacted attendance at the Shanghai Film Festival. 
The Korea Herald

Screen Australia gives rights back to producers ahead of schedule
The production company handed back rights to 1200 projects six months early in an attempt to boost the industry and maximize potential for the titles. 

June 30

China box office increases by 50% in first half of 2015
$3.3B in tickets have been sold since January, and imported films accounted for 52% of the ticket sales.
LA Times

Documentaries become more mainstream thanks to television
More attention for docs on TV is helping the theatrical push.
OC Register

South African start-up company tackles virtual reality
The first trailer for SenseVirtual’s program will launch in July in Cape Town.
Venture Burn

Star Trek 3 title confirmed
Director James Lin confirmed the title of the third instalment of the new Star Trek film and reports that both Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto have signed on for a fourth film.
Science Fiction

June 29

Australia’s green filming rules becoming stricter
Due to the lasting environmental damage that filming can create, local Australian authorities have established clear-cut policies for filmmakers to ensure conservation of local ecosystems. 
Asia One

‘Interstellar’ dominates Saturn Awards

Interstellar took 6 awards, including Best Science Fiction Film Release; Guardians of the Galaxy and Hannibal were also successful. 
Science Fiction

New Manila documentary about islands incites China
Chinese officials have accused the Philippines of “playing the victim” in a new documentary regarding the disputes in the South China Sea.
The Japan Times

‘Song of the Sea’ hopes to change lukewarm Irish reception of films about Irish heritage
Animator Tom Moore’s film Song of the Sea is set for release in Ireland July 10 after a warm reception from American audiences and an Oscar nod.
Irish Examiner

June 25

New film studio in South Korea confirmed
$5.9m has been set aside for a film studio that will house three filming spaces. Construction is set to begin in 2017.

Star Wars film could become third-highest grossing film in history
Analysts predict the film could bring in $1.95bn overall, behind Avatar and Titanic.
The Malaysian Insider

Chinese production company and Canberra sign deal
Film about the only Chinese bushranger is closer to becoming reality after deal is signed with Chinese production company Yuezhong Pictures.
Brisbane Times

June 24

Women in Australian film industry say change is occurring too slowly
The number of female producers in Australian film has increased from 10% to 32% since 1971, but many say this isn’t high enough.
The Guardian

Alibaba pairs with Paramount for new Mission: Impossible film
The company makes its first Hollywood investment to promote the film in China.

New Zealand tops list of film locations to visit
Lord of the Rings filming location came in first on the list; New York City and Northern Ireland followed.
Belfast Live

June 23

Leaked letter threatens those who illegally downloaded Dallas Buyers Club
Downloaders will be given the option to either settle the matter with Voltage or take their chances in court.
Triple M

Film and television union creates hotline for workers to report safety violations
After the death of a camerawoman while filming on set, the ITSE launches hotline.
Sun Times

MPAA reveals employment, international stats
New results reveal that the film industry creates 1.9m jobs in the US, and that 72% of revenue is generated in overseas markets.
Oregon Live

June 22

New visual effects technology presents challenge
Actors describe the struggle of filming scenes with characters that aren’t there in the digital film age.
The Australian

New Zealand and China in talks with Hollywood
A general trade alliance was signed last November, but discussions about other film partnerships are underway.
Global Post

Hindi film industry sees success in 2015
After only four films brought in significant profit in 2014, the industry has experienced more success in 2015.
Business Standard

June 18

Cinemas react to change with innovation
Despite recession and new home-viewing practices, changes in content and theatre design are having an impact.
Business Quarter

Chinese goals for film industry rival Hollywood
Country is seeking to build “soft power” by producing films that appeal to a global audience, not just domestic viewers, claims The Star.
The Star

Trailer released for Robin Williams’ final film
Williams’ final film will be released on July 17 in the US.
9 News Australia

June 17

New VFX film facility in Mumbai announced
Prime Focus World (PFW) and Double Negative’s facility will contain a training hub for new employees.
Business Standard

Residents ask Louisiana governor to veto bill that caps tax credits
A recent bill that would cap filming tax credits at $180M per year is receiving criticism amid fears that it would harm the local economy.

Ninth annual Vancouver Taiwanese film festival takes on environmental issues
This year’s film festival addresses environmental concerns and aims to influence environmental decisions being made in British Colombia.
Vancouver Sun

June 16

Scotland voted top filming location
USA Today readers have selected Scotland as the “world’s best destination” for film lovers.
The National

Furious 7 director signs on for Aquaman
James Wan has agreed to direct Aquaman, which will star Jason Momoa.
Venture Capital Post

Asia’s first smartphone festival to be held in September
The first smartphone film festival will be held in Pakistan later this year with aim to showcase young Pakistani filmmakers.
The News Teller