As of April 1, all Cultural Test applications will be assessed by the UK Film Council. The UKFC will also assess applications under the Council of Europe Convention on cinematic co-production and the UK's other co-productions agreements.
'This will enable the unit to tap into film expertise within the Council and align the work more closely with the industry's needs,' the government explained in a press statement. 'Additionally, through delegating this function, it will enable DCMS to devote more resource to policy work.'
However, the final decision as to whether a film truly is British will remain with the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. A report recommending a decision, based on UKFC's analysis will be submitted to the Secretary of State to make the final determination (but performed on her behalf by Film Branch).
The DCMS and UKFC are in ongoing discussions about staffing. The applications department will be an autonomous department of the Film Council, reporting to COO Alan Bushell.