On 3rd September, I spoke in the Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee’s Debate on the Economic Impact of the Film, TV and Video Games Industries in Scotland, which focused on their report published earlier this year.
One of the key findings in the report was that “the evidence received by the Committee suggests that the lack of large-scale studio space is detrimental to Scotland‘s ability to attract big budget productions, other than location shooting, and therefore the most pressing industry requirement is for a film and TV studio based in Scotland”. A key recommendation from the report is for the Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government to reach a decision on the current private sector proposal for the development of a film and TV studio as soon as possible, and recommends a film industry leadership group to be established to engage with the film industry to understand better and respond to the industry‘s needs.
In the debate I urged for any proposed film and television studio in Scotland should consider being located in Glasgow. I believe it is in Glasgow that we have the existing skills base and infrastructure to best ensure that Scotland makes the most of its pool of talent and for the Scottish film and television industry to thrive. Over the past few years I have been contacted by a number of constituents from the film industry regarding their concerns about the lack of opportunities in their industry here in Scotland, and as a result many have felt that they have had to move away from home to fulfil their potential. In a modern Scotland we should have a high quality and cutting edge facility that is able to attract production companies to rival our neighbours, and further grow our existing talent pool.