THE dynamic development of our screen industries over the last five years continues at a steady pace, as I saw for myself this week when BBC Studioworks was announced as operator of the Kelvin Hall Film and Broadcast Studio Hub of £ 11.9million.
Jointly funded by the Scottish Government through Screen Scotland and Glasgow City Council, this major new facility is expected to open in Glasgow next fall. This will create significant opportunities for program makers and freelancers and contribute to the sustainability of the sector by increasing our skills and talent base.
To maintain the expansion of our film and studio business, building a skilled and well-trained workforce is vital. Investing in the training and development of our people not only improves Scotland’s range of industrial services, but means we don’t lose our talent. So often in the past, to pursue a career in the film industry, people had to move to London or Los Angeles.
The Lab format recently launched by the Research Center (TRC) is well placed to work with the new studios Kelvin Hall. Backed by Screen Scotland, the BBC, Channel 4 and Glasgow City Council, the company based in Glasgow has implemented a comprehensive training program to mentor and nurture the next wave of development talent in the factual entertainment including games and quiz.
Screen Scotland also funds a range of skills and talents courses, including the Training Program for New Entrants, the courses run by BECTU vision and the Outlander program for interns from different departments of the hit TV series. And people from under-represented groups will also have access to entry-level training, development and employment in the screen sector through GMAC Film’s Screen Start, a £ 70,000 initiative funded by Screen Scotland and Glasgow City Council.
Scotland is becoming more attractive to international productions as we continue to add to our existing infrastructure, but we also focus, as shown by our development work around Kelvin Hall on talent development, skills and a creative scope based in Scotland to win more sustainably. Business. The opening last month of Scotland’s Studio, the Royal Scottish National world class recording facility Orchestra, is another feather in the cap for the display industry. As the only fully functional studio to record the sound for picture outside London, it will attract film companies, television and video games all the UK.
I have great confidence in the industry and this is reflected in the level of funding and support we provide to the industry through Screen Scotland. In yesterday’s budget they received an additional £ 750,000 to increase their engagement with the international film and television industries. This builds on their success to date in attracting premium film and television productions to Scotland in what is a very competitive market.
This includes film productions such as big-budget Avengers: Infinity War and No Time to Die, King Outlaw Netflix as well as movies and television series made in Scotland such as Limbo, Guilt and Crime. And let’s not forget that screen activity not only increases Scotland’s visibility internationally, but employs around 7,400 people (2019 figure) and makes a significant contribution to our economy.
Angus Robertson is Cabinet Secretary for Constitution, External Affairs and Culture