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Hollywood and New York have been considered the centre of the film making industry, but that’s all beginning to change.
More and more film directors are making the move to London for the production and post-production of their films, and it’s for good reason. London offers a number of advantages that appeal to directors that they can’t always find in Canada or the US.
Inspiration: London is steeped in a rich history and is filled with iconic filming locations along with museums, galleries, and a healthy night life. All of this works together to create an inspiring and creative air to the city that many directors find appealing in light of the work they’re doing. Being embedded in such an atmosphere means that they don’t have to shut off their creative minds when the day’s filming is done, and they just might find that bit of inspiration that will make their film great.
Location and Attitude: One of the big advantages to filming in London is the wealth of locations available for a director to use in their production. The variety of locations and stages available means that directors are likely to find whatever they need to make their film work. The London area offers the advantage of having a wide variety of landscapes and ancient structures that a director can use over the course of the production. See: Popular London Locations
With studios like the BBC and several others having been in business for several years in London, it’s not all that uncommon to find a section of the city closed off for production purposes, and most Londoners tend to take it in stride. It’s an attitude that directors won’t find in places like New York and Hollywood.
Experienced Crew: It might seem that it’s possible to find an experienced crew in any film making city in the world, and it is. What makes London film crews somewhat unique is their attitude to the film making process. London film crews tend to approach the job of film making like it isn’t just another job to them. There’s a feeling of joy and excitement to be part of something big in the making. For many of them, it doesn’t matter how often they work on the set of a film or how commonplace it might seem after a while. They hold on to that sense of newness and wonder. Again thanks to the presence of a number of studios, there is a wealth of experience to be found among those who work as part of film crews. Film making is a part of London’s history, and the experience of those who have helped make that history helps to make a director’s job just a little easier.
Equipment: There is probably nothing more frustrating to a director than to have production held up for the lack of a key piece of equipment. It doesn’t matter if it’s equipment that was forgotten or just late in arriving. Time is money on a set, and delays can potentially ruin a film budget.
With so many productions making the move to filming and producing in London, the demand for quality production equipment has grown to meet the demand. The full range of equipment suppliers is represented in England along with a large number of equipment rental companies. This means that directors can find the equipment they need here in London without much problem at all. The equipment suppliers of London can provide whatever a director needs and provide it when it’s needed no matter how busy the city might become.
Actors: There are few things more rewarding for a director than to find just the right actor with which to work. And with the growing popularity of several British actors, it only makes sense to make a film featuring such actors in London. This has the advantage of making it more convenient for the actor to fit the production into their schedule, and the director gains the advantage of getting the actor they want for their film along with all the other advantages of filming in London.
Financial Benefits: Last but certainly not least is the financial advantages of making a film in London. While this advantage isn’t strictly for directors, it often plays a key part in how well a film does, and that can directly affect a director’s career in film making.
The city of London offers tax incentives for filmmakers that can’t really be found anywhere else in the world. Its common for London to refund anywhere from 20 to 25 percent of a production’s budget back to them in return for all the additional revenue that the film has brought to London. But the financial advantage doesn’t end there. The UK also refunds a percentage of what the studio pays its talent for the production. These incentives are part of what has helped make a number of films produced in London such a success.
With all of these advantages, it’s easy to see why London has become a favourite for directors when it comes to making their films. From the beginning to the end of production, directors have a leg up by making the choice to film in London. They save money on production and post-production, get a great crew and equipment, and they are filming amidst a wealth of history and culture.