Official figures published by the BFI’s Research and Statistics Unit show UK film and high-end TV (HETV) production grew to record levels of spend in 2022.
The combined spend by film and high-end television production (HETV) during 2022 reached £6.27 billion, the highest ever reported and £1.83 billion higher than for the pre-pandemic year 2019.
The lion’s share of the total £6.27 billion spend was contributed by HETV production with £4.30 billion, or 69 per cent. Feature film production contributed £1.97 billion, or 31 per cent of the total spend.
Inward investment films and HETV shows delivered £5.37 billion, or 86 per cent of the combined production spend underlining the UK’s global reputation as the world-leading centre for film and TV production.
Spend on independent UK filmmaking, however showed a downturn with £174 million, a 31 per cent decrease on 2021. Co-productions which are generally made by independent producers saw a 3 per cent increase in spend with £59 million, representing continued growth over the past five years.
The highest grossing release of 2022 was Top Gun: Maverick with £83.7 million, representing 9 per cent of the year’s total UK box office, followed by Avatar: The Way Of Water, with £70.9 million (still on release when the figures were published). The top 20 film releases of the year in the UK and Republic of Ireland also featured six UK/USA feature films made in the UK: Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness The Batman, Jurassic World: Dominion, Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets Of Dumbledore and Downton Abbey: A New Era.
Of the top 20 UK qualifying film releases which grossed £515.8 million – more than double 2021’s chart – 13 films re UK collaborations with other countries. The top grossing UK independent film was Belfast (pictured) followed by The Banshees of Inisherin, Operation Mincemeat and The Duke.
Last year, the BFI published publish Screen Culture 2033, a 10-year strategy that set out how the UK’s lead organisation for film and the moving image will transform access to its unique and valuable collections, cultural and education programmes, and use policy and research work, alongside a new BFI National Lottery Strategy and Funding Plan to build a diverse and accessible screen culture that benefits all of society and contributes to a prosperous UK economy.
Screen Culture 2033 comprises six major ambitions which will see the BFI:
· transform its relationship with audiences across the UK and become known as an open house to all for the discovery of screen storytelling;
· advocate for the value of the full breadth of screen culture including video games and interactive work;
· create a screen archive of the future that is the most open in the world;
· be digital-first in delivering cultural programmes through BFI+, the next generation streaming service, expanding reach and access for all;
· championing screen culture in school curricula; and build a skilled and sustainable workforce that reflects the UK population; and
· address where the sector needs support in delivering public benefit most through its National Lottery funding, policy work and evidence.
Working in unison with Screen Culture 2033, the new BFI National Lottery Strategy 2023-2033 will guide how it will invest approximately £45 million a year of National Lottery ‘good cause’ funding over the first three years of the 10-year strategy period by prioritising:
· £54 million for filmmakers
· £34.2 million across education and skills
· £27.6 million for audience development
· £10 million for screen heritage work
· £7.3 million across innovation and industry services
· £3.2 million for international activity
Read more about Screen Culture 2023.
Image source: 'Belfast', Universal Pictures