With 301 film and TV productions selecting the Liverpool City Region as the location to film their stories for the screen, the Liverpool Film Office had its busiest year to date.
Looking back at this showstopping year, the Film Office has:
- Hosted 301 productions, consisting of 1,933 film days
- Boosted the local economy by £43.6 million
- Supported 1,493 full-time equivalent jobs (direct, indirect and induced)
The city region welcomed huge projects in the last year such as Taylor Swift’s pop promo for I Can See You (Taylor’s Version), Sexy Beast (Paramount), Cobra 3 (New Pictures/Sky), The Responder 2 (Dancing Ledge/BBC), Time 2 (BBC Studios/BBC), The Gathering (World Productions/Channel 4), Dead Hot (Quay Street Productions/Amazon), The Tower 3 (Mammoth Screen/Windhover Film/ITV) and Such Brave Girls (VAL/A24/BBC).
In addition to supporting 63 different Eurovision productions filming in the city, the Film Office also added a secret pop-up performance by Sam Ryder at the Albert Dock to the total.
In order to close the skills gap by supporting 1,000 new hires from diverse backgrounds to create a more strong and inclusive workforce, Screen Alliance North, North East Screen, Screen Manchester, and Screen Yorkshire approved a report proposing to accept funding from the BFI.
The Film Office, which oversees The Depot, welcomed Paramount’s Sexy Beast as its first long-term tenant. The film wrapped in February after 144 shoot days throughout the Liverpool City Region. More recently, the two 20,000 sq ft units hosted a special Macbeth residency featuring Ralph Fiennes and Indira Varma. These actors also conducted workshops for GCSE and A-Level students in Liverpool’s Picton ward.
The second season of Time, which aired in October following funding from the Liverpool Film Office via the Liverpool City Region Production Fund, was another memorable event. The much awaited UK premiere of the highly anticipated series took place at St George’s Hall, with writers Helen Black and Jimmy McGovern in attendance along with global superstar Bella Ramsey.
The writers and actors strike in the US has hit the UK production landscape hard, impacting freelance crew and supply chain services all over the country, including Liverpool.
The head of the film office, Lynn Saunders, had an award-winning year. At the Women in Film and Television Awards this year, she received the Mercury Business Award, which honours exceptional business achievement by a woman in the industry during the previous three years.
The Film Office will mark its 35th anniversary in 2024. As the first Film Office in Europe, it has a bright future ahead of it, with remedial work set to begin on a state-of-the-art film and TV campus located on the site of the former Littlewoods Building and a focus on skills training for those new to the industry to increase accessibility and representation in the screen sector and to continue building a thriving and skilled workforce throughout the north of England.
Head of Liverpool Film Office, Lynn Saunders, said:
“As we head into our 35th year, I can honestly say that this year has been a truly ground-breaking year for film and TV production across the Liverpool City Region – from feature films to high-end TV, we have seen it all.
“Year in and out, my team of eight, supported by a team of eight hundred, work to bring production to our region and this has resulted in a fantastic array of projects filming right across Wirral, Halton, Knowsley, St Helens and Sefton.
“Despite the year we’ve had in the Liverpool City Region, we are mindful that the strikes in the US have hit production hard in the UK, particularly for crew and services, many who live in our area.
“With our recent BFI skills cluster partnership with Screen Manchester, North East Screen and Screen Yorkshire, under Screen Alliance North, we will be working to continue to build a thriving and skilled screen workforce in the north and I would urge anyone who is interested in a career in our industry to keep their eyes peeled on our channels early next year for some exciting news.
“Looking to next year, we will be working with our partners on how to generate a more sustainable and skilled screen sector in the north while continuing our efforts to generate and retain even more production in the region.”
To find out more about Liverpool Film office, visit their official website.