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Defining the Film industry

Adulthood still

The UK's film industry is part of a constantly evolving creative media landscape.

When we talk about the film industry, we're referring to its six different component parts: Development, Production, Facilities, Distribution, Exhibition and Export.

The nature of the industry means production companies are often set up for a specific production and then close down when production is complete.

So while our latest research shows there are around 400 'permanent' (i.e. registered) companies in the film industry, this figure varies depending on the number of productions being worked on at any one time.

Of the companies existing today, we can say approximately 43% are production, 13% are distribution and the remaining 44% are exhibition companies.

In 2006, the UK film industry contributed £4.3 billion to the UK economy, up from £3.1 billion in 2004.

The UK industry is an independent creator of feature films, a co-production partner and a provider of services to the international film industry.

In 2007, UK production activity was £747 million, making it the fourth highest production year on record. Inward investment productions including Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince and Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian and indigenous productions such as Brideshead Revisited and How To Lose Friends and Alienate People were just some of the productions made in the UK.

516 films were released across the UK in 2007, a 58% increase over the decade. UK films, including co-productions, accounted for 21% of releases and 29% of the market by value.

In 2007 the UK had the largest number of digital screens in Europe at 296 screens, double the number in 2006.

While it is usually the cinematic release of a film that establishes its reputation, over half the revenues of the industry in the UK come from DVD/video retail and rental.

Film theft was estimated to have reduced the legal UK film market by £404 million in 2007; illegal downloading and copying of films remains one of the major challenges for the industry.

Labour Market Intelligence Digest
Creative Skillset's industry endorsed research programme provides authoritative Labour Market Intelligence (LMI) for the creative media industries throughout the UK.
This LMI informs how we allocate our funding and underpins the development of skills solutions as well as our strategies and Sector Profiles. The latest data available are summarised and published in a series of Sector LMI Digests

Digests for 2011 are currently being produced. The LMI Digest for Film 2011 will be published here soon.

For more facts and figures on the film industry, please visit Creative Skillset's Research pages.

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