Monday, March 31, 2008

Good News for Sigma Films and Film City Glasgow

Another rare moment again as there is actually some good news for a Monday morning for The Herald is reporting on something that will help Sigma Films and Film City Glasgow. According to the paper, Glasgow City Council is due to approve some £907,000, which will go to Film City Glasgow and "be used towards the construction of 20 office units to be leased to production companies working on anything from corporate promotions to big-budget feature films." I think this is GREAT NEWS, and I'm sure all at FCG and esp Sigma and Gillian Berrie must be thrilled.

The paper continued with this quote from the admin of FCG, Tiernan Kelly (who also once posted on Getyourpeople with a really sweet entry) who said:
"This is a very exciting time to be in film and broadcast production in Glasgow and we expect it to stay that way for at least the next 10 years.Now we can offer office space to production firms, which is notoriously difficult, offer sound and post production at 60% the cost of Soho production houses, while production in general can be done at 60% the London cost in Glasgow. Facilities like Film City can only help perpetuate the work and allow us to properly compete with London and Manchester."Recent figures put the value of film production in Glasgow at £17m, with further spin-offs to the local economy.

I know they have established a plan of development, taking that lovely old building and converting it to a viable working film studio, with these additional offices part of the last phase I think . On the Sigma Films website it says "Long term, in addition to the film and post production facilities, the creation of a cafĂ© bar area and between 16 – 20 office spaces in Phase 3 will provide a dynamic and synergetic environment for creative/media cross-fertilisation and collaboration at local, national and international level." It must be a relief to know they are finally able to complete this project and focus more on drawing in all those other production companies and such. To me, this is all quite logical and practical and it just good business and smart investment in the future. Perhaps its the American business, go get em approach or influence in me, but personally I find this very admirable and wish them all the luck with their plans and dreams and the hard work involved in to creating a flourishing and self-producing film industry in Scotland that is not so reliant on others. I have read some of the criticisms of the overall plan of a thriving media sector in Glasgow, and while I think there is some validity in a few minor criticism, for the most part I think they are just a bunch of silly and afraid of change naysayers and looking at the negative. Nothing comes from Nothing and if you never even freaking try NOTHING will be accomplished. Many of these same complaints were bandied about when silicon valley, Boston and other hubs /center in other businesses and industries were started too and heh they proved to be the right decision. I applaud Sigma, city council, and the other backers for being able to look beyond and see the larger picture. Yes yes OF COURSE I know I don't live there and am unaware of all the particulars, but as a person looking in from the outside, I simply fail to see why there are those who are so negative. New business=money=a resurgence in property values, salaries, economy and quality of life no?

Well anyway, in addition to this, I also very much admire how they have gone into an older section of Glasgow and are not only trying to establish this media sector in the town, but also have preserved that gorgeous old building, saving it from decay and abandonment-yay for that!

Now rehabbing old buildings is nothing new, and quite common literally all around the world in just about every manner conceivable (I even know of several churches that are now breweries lol yes Americans have no shame). I've lived in older homes that have been rehabbed -Nola, DC etc (as does my brother, he the big shot attorney and never one to pass up a chance to make a buck, several years ago moved to a former older part of his city where a rehab is ongoing for the older part of town, complete with refurbished homes, these with their fabulous high ceilings and excellent woodwork and craftsmanship that woefully is lacking today. Today, along with the hundreds and hundreds of others who did the same, the home is worth four to six times what it was when he bought it! )

While I couldn't find too much information on the FCG building itself save a handful of articles, but I will see if I can find more (I think there's a Facebook group too ) I did see these photos on the always reliable Flickr of course, including this awesome photo from some guy named Sauvagii whose work I regularly view; he does good work I think! I also remembered reading while HF was in production that someone was doing a documentary on the former Govan Town Hall, however Im not sure though if its still on as the blog hasn't been updated in over a year. I do know they have some great music/post production facilities now based at FCG, as well as the ongoing use for movies and shorts of course. I assume they are basing Rounding Up Donkeys out of that building (although the news on that film is apparently hidden away behind a wall of silence and the news section on the Film City Glasgow website regrettably hasn't been updated since last year either so not sure what they are up to now, but maybe it slow due to the construction or pretty booked cause of Donkeys or something) On the positive side however is word that they shot Colin Kennedy's We are the Physics music video there. There are some nice photos from the shoot which took place at FilmCity Glasgow on the Physics site here and here. Most joyfully of all is last week the FUNNY and well done behind the scenes video of the making of "You Can Do Athletics BTW" went online at the We are the Physics new website-sooo cool, cant wait to see the finished product!

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