An interesting document recording early filmmaking in British Columbia. The story is told by pioneer film workers who began their careers in the 1950s/60s, and it progresses until we see ... See full summary »
An interesting document recording early filmmaking in British Columbia. The story is told by pioneer film workers who began their careers in the 1950s/60s, and it progresses until we see what the film industry is like in 2003. A worthwhile journey to witness how the business has changed over the decades. Original B/W footage of Oliver Reed and Rita Tushingham filming The Trap (1966) on Bowen Island. Written by
Savage Justice (Sweet and the Bitter 1967) is considered the first feature shot in British Columbia, however during the 1920s and 30s British productions would use the area to film what was called "The Quota Quickie". British Columbia would double for the United Kingdom.
(The Quota): A government enforced requirement for British cinemas to show a quota of British produced films for a duration of 10 years. The Act's supporters believed this would promote the emergence of a vertically-integrated film industry in which production, distribution and exhibition infrastructure were controlled by the same companies. The vertically-integrated American film industry of that era saw rapid growth in the years immediately following the end of the First World War. The idea, therefore, was to try and counter Hollywood's perceived economic and cultural dominance by promoting similar business practices among British studios, distributors and cinema chains. By creating an artificial market for British films, it was hoped the increased economic activity in the production sector would eventually lead to the growth of a self-sustaining industry. The quota was initially set at 7.5% for exhibitors, which was raised to 20% in 1935.
Chow, James H.:
When I got involved in the business during the 1960s you sat on the sideline for a long time until someone let you in the door. It was the proving ground. Nowadays it seems like there's a formula to get in and the kids just play it like a game.
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Being part of the film industry myself I had heard about this film long before its release and thought 'what a good idea' - an historical journey into British Columbia's film activity. What made this documentary so interesting when I finally did see it was, it didn't feel like a doc., the filmmaker gave it more likeness to a classic feature film. A few minutes in and you were instantly transported to a place and time and introduced to engaging people that made you want to watch and get into the story. The film put 50 years into perspective and delivered it with ease and a certain slickness that's rare in historical documentaries. It made yesterday exciting again.
I'd recommend this to anyone in the film industry, I'd even suggest it to people that are just interested in good storytelling even if some of the detail of the film business is not of interest. After watching this I'd also be curious to see what comes out of this particular filmmaker next.
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