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Thursday, 20 October 2011

Quintessential Britain

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The wonderful world of Twitter presented a slightly uncomfortable, yet relevant question that I had to get to the bottom of. I follow a shed load of people. When I say ‘follow’, (for those who don’t have Twitter) I mean I subscribe to their tweets. I’m not a slightly imbalanced fanatic hiding in bushes. I follow a lot of people for both work reasons and for variety and I seem to follow a lot of ‘Industry’ types in the US.

There was one particular guy I followed from the States, he was a writer – mostly for screen, but as I’m TRYING to become a Playwright I thought he might have some tips I could use. Anyway! This guy has worked both in American and England, apparently so I thought he’s be very knowledgeable. Turns out this guy had a huge chip on his shoulder about our Film industry. He seemed to have very odd views that we somehow copy the American way of film making (poorly in his opinion) or somehow aspire to BE the American Film making industry. He thought it would be best if we did our own thing . He also wanted to know why we don’t promote our modern Films in America and why we only showed England as it was in the 1800′s.

I neither have the time or the patience to name the endless list of amazing and modern Films we've created in this country and this is certainly not a lecture, but one question came to mind. Does Hollywood only entertain English Films if we are the ‘Quintessential Britain’ that they hear about in the story/history books?

If we look at Harry Potter, Chronicles of Narnia, Young Victoria, blah blah blah all of these are set in a time faaaaar gone by, so to a certain extent if you only watch big Hollywood blockbusters, you would think we still ride in Carriages and wear corsets over here. But is this what Hollywood wants from us? Why don’t we/they fund modern Films to reach that big budget status? Is this our commodity that we sell to stay relevant or even involved in the Film making industry?

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