Make more movies in London, Mayor tells Indian filmmakers
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson today announced that two new Indian films are to be shot in London in 2013, as he met with top film and TV producers in Mumbai
The third film in India's hugely successful Housefull franchise - Housefull 3, starring Akshay Kumar - will be entirely filmed in London and the Mayor has also invited the film's producer Sajid Nadiadwala to shoot his directorial debut Kick, starring Salman Khan, in the UK capital. Post-production on both films, which have a combined budget of £35m, will be in London's Soho.
The Mayor, who is on a visit to India to strengthen economic and cultural links with the country, today met with top level Indian filmmakers and producers in the film-making capital Mumbai and urged them to make London their movie set of choice.
The Mayor said: 'I'm thrilled that Sajid Nadiadwala has chosen London as the backdrop for not one, but two of his brand new blockbusters. As our recent World Cities Culture Report shows, London and Mumbai are major players on the international stage for creativity and the arts.
Filmmaking is massively important to both our cities and we need to build on the momentum that already exists.
'2012 has been another bumper year for movie-making in London and I want to make it as easy as possible to film in the city, whether you want to feature an iconic landmark as a backdrop, take advantage of our second to none post-production facilities, or be amongst the first to use our incredible Olympic Park as a location.'
London is the third busiest production city in the world, with studios in and around the capital making up 75 per cent of the UK film industry, and every day an average of 40 crews is out filming on the city streets. London is home to some of the world's best post-production companies, offering award winning, state-of-the-art facilities that are in demand for the world's biggest effects movies.
The industry supports almost 117, 500 jobs and contributes over £4.6 billion to the UK economy.
The new James Bond movie Skyfall and Ridley Scott's The Counselor were both filmed in the heart of the capital this year, while last weekend iconic Trafalgar Square became the setting for action scenes from All You Need is Kill, Warner Bros Pictures' new film starring Tom Cruise due for release in 2014.
London and India already have a healthy creative relationship, with a steady stream of Indian films being shot in the UK over the last decade. Earlier this month saw the premiere of Jab Tak Hai Jaan, the final film of revered Bollywood director Yash Chopra, who died in October at the age of 80. Starring Shah Rukh Khan, much of the film was shot in London, taking in many city landmarks, with significant assistance from Film London, the capital's film and media agency, to ensure the shoot was as smooth as possible. British filmmakers have also been busy in India over the last few years, not least Danny Boyle who directed the Oscar winning Slumdog Millionaire.
At today's summit with film and television executives, the Mayor outlined the UK's new Creative Sector Tax Relief, which comes into force in 2013 and is aimed at international companies producing TV, animation and games. This will complement the tax relief already available to filmmakers and a film co-production agreement that is in place between India and the UK. The Mayor hopes Indian film-makers and TV producers, who can benefit from the new tax relief, will find working in the capital even more attractive.
Also taking part in today's summit was David Parfitt, the renowned British producer (Parade's End and Shakespeare in Love) and Chair of Film London. As the capital's film and media agency, Film London offers a one-stop shop for film crews wanting to shoot in the city, helping them to gain access to locations, as well as highly skilled crews and cutting edge facilities that are amongst the best in the world. As well as a dedicated online guide for Indian productions filming in capital, Film London also runs a number of successful international business events, including the Production Finance Market, which connects international financiers and producers, and the London UK Film Focus, an export event for British film and sales agents.
Other UK figures taking part in the summit were Lee Stone and Jeremy Gawade from leading media and entertainment law firm Lee and Thompson and Frank Stehling, CEO of Primehouse GmbH, who act as consultants on a range of issues to film and TV producers, as well as games developers.
Indian producers and executives attending included:
Aashish Sing & Rajesh Punjabi, Yash Raj Films
Sanjeev Lamba, Reliance Media Works
Indranil Chakraborty, Big Synergy TV
Sandeep Bhargarva, founder of Studio 18, part of Viacom
Ashish Bhatnagar, i-Dream
Dina Dattani, Private Consultant
Priti Sinha, Reel Life Entertainment
Sajid Nadiadwala and Swapna David, Nadiadwala Grandson Entertainment
Vicky Bahri, Auvil Productions
Vikram Bhatt, ASA Productions
Ram Mirchandani, Rampage Motion Pictures
Vivek Agrawal, A Richer Lens.
Madhu Mantena, Big Bang Media
Mukesh Bhatt and Kulmeet Makkar, Film & Television Producers Guild of India
Notes to editors
The Mayor is on a five day visit to India, accompanied by a delegation of top London business people, to promote London as the destination of choice for investors and international trade. He will be taking part in a series of high-level meetings with Indian business leaders, senior politicians and investors in the key business hubs of Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai.
The visit is part of a wider series of trips Boris Johnson is planning to key overseas markets in the next 18 months, including China, Brazil and the Middle East. The aim is to attract foreign investment, promote export, create jobs in the capital and build on the huge exposure London received as a result of hosting the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Film London, as the capital’s film and media agency, aims to ensure London has a thriving film sector that enriches the city’s businesses and its people. The agency works with all the screen industries to sustain, promote and develop London as a major international production and film cultural capital, and it supports the development of the city’s new and emerging film-making talent. Film London is funded by the Mayor of London, the National Lottery through the BFI, and receives significant support from Arts Council England and Creative Skillset.
Film London's activities include:
Managing the national remit for inward investment through film
Maintaining, strengthening and promoting London's position as a film-friendly region to attract investment
Investing in new and established talent through a range of specialised production schemes
Boosting employment and competitiveness in the capital’s film and media sectors by facilitating funding as well as supporting training and business development activities
Maximising access to the capital’s film culture by helping audiences discover film in all its diversity
Working with a wide range of partners to promote London through the production industries
Utilising opportunities provided by London 2012 and its legacy to strengthen the capital’s film industry and culture
This summer the Mayor published the World Cities Culture Report 2012, the biggest international survey of its kind, which collects an unprecedented amount of data on the scope and impact of the cultural assets and activities that are produced and consumed in 12 major cities: Berlin, Istanbul, Johannesburg, London, Mumbai, New York, Paris, São Paulo, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney and Tokyo. Using 60 indicators and reports from each of the participating cities, the report shows that culture is seen as important as finance and trade and sits at the heart of public policy. For more information go to
www.worldcitiesculturereport.com said: 'London is the heart of the UK’s film industry and home to some of the world’s best crew and facilities. We have a fantastic track record of successfully facilitating Indian productions which have shot in London and we want to build on this work for the benefit of both of our industries. It is an honour to come to Mumbai, the centre of India's film industry, with the Mayor of London to meet with the industry and to announce two new films which will shoot in London next year. With the support of the Mayor, Film London and incoming tax relief for animation and TV, I hope we can encourage more Indian productions to come to London in the future.' www.filmlondon.org.uk