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UK film industry; IN ASSOCIATION WITH THE BIRMINGHAM POST e-PAPER MEDIA MARKETING.

The UK film industry is may be stunted by a lack of funding for low-budget features, a Birmingham filmmaker has said.

Rob Brown, who has premiered short films Satsuma and Short Call at the Raindance Film Festival, said up-and-coming young directors could be left out in the cold by public funding bodies, which focused on feature film budgets of between pounds 500,000 to pounds 3 million.

Mr Brown, said this could be the reason why the UK, which has a reputation for creativity, was not realising its potential in the low-budget film market.

He said: "In the US, there are private investors who are willing to fund features films of all sizes, but in the UK, it doesn't seem to be the case.

Perhaps this is because investors think the market is sewn up by the public funding bodies.

"But this isn't true. Up-and-coming filmmaker can often get grants for short films, but find it very difficult to attract public funding for their first feature film. This is because a film with a budget of at least pounds 500,000 is a big risk.

"Young, creative filmmakers can be more innovative with smaller budgets and still have the opportunity to be very successful. There are a number of good examples of this coming out of the US. Pieces of April was low budget, but won international acclaim. El Mariachi was made for EUR7,000 (pounds 3,574) and its one of the most respected films of all time. Britain needs some independent successes like these under its belt."

Mr Brown's comments came as he launched a nationwide search for private financiers for his new feature film Outsider.

He is holding a series of investors previews to help attract funding for the low-budget production, with the next taking place this Thursday at The Custard Factory Theatre in Digbeth. He is also advertising the film through his website www.thedistracted.co.uk.

The 90-minute film tells the story of a man who wakes up with no memory and finds the whole world is out to get him.

Mr Brown said he had already raised part of the capital needed to fund the production but needs an additional pounds 70,000 from investors.

CAPTION(S):

Outsider's director of photography Emma Vickers with filmmaker Rob Brown
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jan 21, 2008
Words:383
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