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Pinewoood to invest in low-budget British films

08-Mar-2011 • Bond News

Pinewood Shepperton, the film studio behind the James Bond and Carry On franchises, is committing millions of pounds to financing the next generation of British films, reports the Telegraph.

Ivan Dunleavy, chief executive, said Pinewood would invest in about four small British budget films every year. Pinewood was once a major financier of British films, having put up the money for Great Expectations and Black Narcissus.

"Several decades ago Pinewood would consistently co-invest in feature films, and many decades ago it put up all the money for many of the Carry On films," Mr Dunleavy said. "But it's less about the heritage and more about supporting small British productions and getting them in our studios."

Mr Dunleavy said he hoped the deal would allow Pinewood to be able to support "the next The King's Speech."

Pinewood will buy up to a 20pc stake in films with production budgets of about £2m. It plans to invest in about four films each year, at an annual investment of about £1.6m.

"British film has enjoyed extraordinary success recently, and in it's 75th anniversary year, I am delighted that Pinewood is returning, on a small scale, to its heritage in British film production," Mr Dunleavy added.

The films will also help Pinewood fill up any spare capacity at its film studios in Buckinghamshire and Surrey.

Jeremy Hunt, the Culture Secretary, said: "As the recent success of The King's Speech demonstrates, smaller British films have the potential to become smash hits globally."

Pinewood today reported a 31pc rise in full-year pre-tax profits to £5.82m as revenues increased 7.6pc to £43.4m.

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