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The UK has always been a hotbed of cinematic talent, which is why it’s crucial to constantly remind legislators of the importance of protecting and supporting this rich cultural economy. Film the House is an imaginative Parliamentary competition which manages to be fun whilst giving young creatives an opportunity to engage with their MPs, win fantastic prizes and all the while promote the importance of intellectual property rights. Those rights are the seed corn of your future, that being the case I can only urge every would-be film-maker to give it a go!
As the former Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Film Group, I recognise the importance of Intellectual Property, it enables filmmakers and scriptwriters to earn recognition or financial benefit from what they create. It is hard to think of a service, product or activity which in some way does not depend on IP. I believe that the IP system must aim to create an environment in which creativity and innovation can flourish. I would urge you all to enter the Film the House short film competition as it is a great way of getting wider exposure for your films.
Intellectual property is a vital way of making sure that creators are properly rewarded for the artistic works they produce. This is as true for film and other visual media as it is for books, fashion or music. Film the House is designed to highlight the importance we place in Parliament on IP and on good IP protection and enforcement. We hope that for their part creators will respond by taking part in Film the House and demonstrate the huge audiovisual and writing talent that we have in this country.
Britain’s creative industries lead the world and make a huge contribution to our economy. But to do so, there has to be a strong regime to protect intellectual property. Film the House has already proved successful in raising awareness of the importance of IP, not least to the writers from whose imagination and creativity all else follows. I am delighted that Film the House will provide another opportunity for aspiring film-makers to showcase their talent and I am looking forward to seeing the entries.
Those who work in our creative industries are world beaters, singing way above the scale and generating more than £101.5 billion a year for the UK economy. While audiences around the globe lap up this tremendous creativity with more enthusiasm than ever, it’s never been more important to protect those who make it all happen. That’s where Film the House comes in. It’s a fantastic way of celebrating the newest generation of creative artists, while also highlighting the importance of intellectual property rights and engaging MPs with their constituents. I’m delighted to have been a part of last year’s parliamentary celebrations – so much fun – and I want to encourage any budding filmmakers to get involved with this year’s competition. Make it happen!
For me, as a writer of original Television and film screenplays the value of an IP is impossible to over-estimate. A hit show might be worth many thousands of pounds in future income but if I don’t own or retain a share of the IP all that revenue goes to people who didn’t, at the end of the day, create the show. Losing an IP in perpetuity is like losing a pension and potentially just as disastrous for writers.
With uploading and file-sharing become increasingly prevalent, screenwriters are suffering a corresponding drop in both income and opportunity. With the UK’s creative industries contributing almost £90bn to UK GDP, defending Intellectual Property has never been so fundamental.
After twenty years of working as a TV scriptwriter I know for sure that Intellectual Property MUST be protected. Scripts written for a children’s television series (this I know from bitter experience) might resurface as a series of attractive picture books, which might not bear the name of the writer. When a writer’s name doesn’t appear on book the writer cannot claim for various streams of income such as PLR (Public Lending Rights) or ALCS monies, both vital sources of regular income which are often the bedrock of a writers’ income. MPs better understanding copyright laws as a result of an initiative like Film the House is very good news to me.