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Byline: Paul Suart

FORGET hooray for Hollywood - how about bravo for Birmingham? For the city is carving a niche for itself as an option for film and TV crews - with shoots bringing in almost pounds 10million in the past six months alone.

The latest big-budget production, the Stephen Poliakoff drama Dancing on the Edge starring actors Matthew Goode and Chiwetel Ejiofor, has just finished filming in the city.

Much of the filming took at the Council House in Victoria Square and the Grand Hotel in Colmore Row and the Black Country Museum were also hired.

Film Birmingham, the city's film and TV office, said the BBC series, which follows the plight of Stars: Matthew a black jazz band in the 1930s, contributed to the pounds 9.8million spent by production crews in Birmingham over the past six months.

The group said the cash was spent on expenses such as hotels, restaurants, equipment, public transport and services.

Film Birmingham manager Sindy Campbell said: "The Poliakoff drama is the latest in a long line of major productions to be based in Birmingham. The revenue figures have steadily increased over the last three-and-a-half years.

"Birmingham is really starting to make a name for itself as a location for entertainment and drama series.

"On average, 40 per cent of the actors on each production come from Birmingham so it has a real impact on creating jobs and the regional economy."

Birmingham was used last year as the backdrop for BBC shows Hustle, now airing in its last series, and Line Of Duty, as well as Bollywood movie Tezz, released in April.

Film Birmingham said the city was being lined up for two feature films this year and talks were under way to bring a lucrative ten-part TV series to Birmingham.

the Edge. The figures emerged after BAFTA-award winning director Michael Clifford, whose latest film Turbulence was filmed on his doorstep in Kings Heath, called for more pro-ductions to come to the city.

"If more films were shot here, it would raise the city's profile internationally," he said.

"A film like Turbulence getting recognition internationally would go a long way, not just for the film, but also the city."



Stars: Matthew Goode and Chiwetel Ejiofor are in Dancing on the Edge. Lights, camera, action: Director Stephen Poliakoff is filming his latest drama in the Council House and on Colmore Row (right).
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Jan 24, 2012
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