When Was It Said?

By Margaret Dickinson

(answers below)

a) “On educational, cultural and political grounds the power of the film to serve important national interests has been fully established.”

b) “The case for a British film industry can be made on entertainment, economic, employment, tourist and cultural grounds.”

c) “A cinematograph film represents something more than a mere commodity to be bartered against others. Already the screen has great influence both politically and culturally over the minds of the people.”

d) “... if a flourishing film production industry is to be established, reasonably substantial amounts of money will be needed over an assured period of years.”

e) “If the public considers it desirable for political, cultural or economic reasons that British films should be produced, then it must be prepared for the government not only to protect the industry indefinitely but also to aid it financially for as long ahead as can be seen.”

f) “On a wider front the US Government is using GATT negotiations to force countries to lift restrictions on the importations of US films.”

g) “During the GATT talks Mr Valenti said Europe’s refusal to include films and TV in the pact was ‘protectionism unmasked’.”

h) “The industries of the democratic countries have every reason to stand shoulder to shoulder against the imposition of quota, the creation of cartels and the raising of any and all barriers to the free flow of motion picture commerce.”

i) “It must be remembered that the reason why European films are not shown more widely here is the determination of the US-influenced section of the trade that they should not be shown.”

j) “Britain, though it owes much to the enterprise and example of the US film industry, has for too long been an economic and cultural colony of Hollywood. In economic terms, many of the greatest successes of British film talent have assisted the US economy far more than they have helped the British. In cultural terms the continuing dominance of the British film industry by Hollywood has militated against the development of a characteristically British cinema.”

k) “The American drive to obliterate every vestige of a native British film industry is succeeding admirably... So far as films go we are now a colonial people.”

l) “Audio visual products are the US’s second or third largest export. [...] Americans defend the market and are relentless in their efforts to expand it abroad. But they exercise a tough protectionism over their own internal market.”


Answers:

a) 1934 Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, article by Simon Rowson
b) 1995 National Heritage Committee report, ‘The British Film Industry’
c) 1944 Board of Trade ‘Tendencies to Monopoly in the Cinematograph Industry’
d) 1975 Report of the Prime Minister’s Working Report of the ACTT Nationalisation Forum
e) 1952 Political and Economic Planning
f) 1973 Report of the ACTT Nationalisation Forum
g) 6 Sep 1994, Valenti, Guardian
h) 1945, Jack Alicoate, editor of Film Daily
i) Oct 1947, Documentary News Letter
j) 1975 Report of the Prime Minister’s Working Party, ‘Future of the British Film Industry’
k) Nov 1937, World Film News
l) 2 Mar 1995, Bertolucci, Guardian