City of Cape Town proposes fund to kickstart flagging film industry

Film Industry Source: Google Images

As part of the City’s attempt to revive the once thriving film industry in the Mother City, Cape Town has proposed a Film Fund to support development and empowerment in the industry.

The City intends consulting an advisory panel of experts to assist with disbursing funding to projects.

Mayor Dan Plato said: “We want this industry to flourish, because we recognise the value it brings to Cape Town. For the industry to grow, we understand that it has to receive support from the government to position Cape Town as the premier film and media hub of Africa.”

The City has frozen tariffs for the film industry for the 2018/19 financial year ands well as the current (2019/20) financial years.

The City said Cape Town’s film industry contributed about R3.5billion to the local economy in 2015 and created at least 10000 direct and indirect job opportunities.

Mayco member for Safety and Security JP Smith said: “The budget for the Film Fund will be determined through council approval once a report on the proposed fund is tabled at the meeting.”

“The City is always committed to assisting various sectors which contribute to economic growth and create job opportunities for our residents. When the film industry took a downturn due to various factors including the drought, the City decided to freeze tariffs in order to assist in reducing the costs for film production companies during the tough time.”

Cape Town’s Film Permit Office received 13211 film bookings in the 2018/19 financial year and issued 8048 permits for film shoots on City roads and public property.

Monica Rorvik, head of Wesgro’s film and media promotion unit, welcomed the announcement.

“We look forward to the details as they are announced. We believe that this intervention will be transformative for the industry. This is a positive response to the research conducted in 2017, which recommended that a film fund should be a component of any film city strategy, especially to drive transformation.”