Golden age of British film should be studied at school

Click to follow
The Independent Culture

Every schoolchild should have the chance to study film, according to a Government-commissioned report, as Britain looks to capitalise on a "golden" age and usher in the next generation of The King's Speech-style successes.

The Culture minister Ed Vaizey last year commissioned a panel, including Downton Abbey writer Lord Julian Fellowes, to draw up proposals to "increase audience choice and grow the demand for British films in the UK".

The panel, chaired by the former Labour Culture Secretary Lord Chris Smith, reported yesterday, with the role of education a strong theme among its 56 proposals. Lord Smith said: "British film is going through a golden period. A run of British-made and British-based movies has been taking audiences around the world by storm. But we cannot be complacent."

Other recommendations include: incentives to ensure producers, directors and distributors collaborate more closely; a commitment to combat piracy; and a call for major broadcasters, especially Sky and ITV, to invest more in backing British film.

Lord Smith said: "Channel 4, and to a certain extent the BBC, have done pretty well by British films in the course of recent years, but they can do better."

He said Sky and ITV "don't put any support into British film really at all". Sky and ITV pointed out that they invest heavily in UK creative industries.