640 film and TV productions benefited from restart scheme, says BFI

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A total of 640 film and television productions have received coronavirus-related support from the Government, the British Film Institute (BFI) has said.

Television series Peaky Blinders and Midsomer Murders and films Mothering Sunday and Benediction are among the projects to have been helped by the Film and TV Production Restart Scheme.

The scheme unveiled in July 2020 has provided assistance to productions struggling to secure coronavirus-related insurance and has supported £1.9 billion of spending within the sector, according to the BFI.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “I’ve seen first hand how this scheme has been a lifeline during this pandemic, keeping the cameras rolling on TV and film sets across the country, and supporting tens of thousands of jobs in the process – from actors, make-up artists and technicians all the way to catering companies and transport firms.

“Thanks to this scheme, our screen industry is raring to go – and British-made productions will be at the heart of our recovery.”

Chancellor Rishi Sunak added: “Our world-leading film and TV industry supports hundreds of thousands of jobs – that’s why it was so important we helped it to get up and running again as part of our Plan for Jobs.

“It’s great that one year on since its launch the Restart Scheme has given so many productions the confidence to keep shooting, supporting jobs across the UK and producing the film and TV we all love.”

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Rishi Sunak (Hannah McKay/PA)

Ben Roberts, BFI chief executive, said: “We make high quality film and television content enjoyed by audiences at home and around the world, demonstrating the skills and expertise of our world-class crew, cast and production businesses.

“The pandemic brought production to a halt early last year and unable to restart without insurance cover against potential Covid disruption, however the Government’s Film & TV Production Restart Scheme has been a game-changer for the industry’s recovery.

“A year down the line we are looking at a booming sector attracting further commercial investment and opportunities for more jobs and contributing to the UK’s economy.”

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