This week Adam Torel, the managing director of Third Window Films, announced on Facebook that TWF would no longer distribute any of its films theatrically due to, quote: ...the resounding opening weekend failure of Himizu (and that
of Villain before it)...
Torel, whose company specialises in Asian films spoke of BBFC fees as a a major contributory to the decision:
I don't think people most people realize how hard it is for independent theatrical distribution in the UK. Even my friends who run distribution companies in other countries are amazed when I tell them. In my opinion it comes down to 3 things
which hurt us more than most:
In the UK we MUST certify all films with the BBFC. In the US you can release a film unrated , but obviously other countries make it mandatory. The main problem with the UK is that the BBFC require you to certify your film both
theatrically and for home video separately, each at a MASSIVE cost. Even though they're watching the exact same film and will give it exactly the same rating they still charge you twice! and the cost is astronomical!
£ 8.40 per minute of film plus a handling fee of £ 120!! Imagine the costs for certifying Love Exposure for both theatrical and DVD = more than £ 4,000!!!
Why the need to review the film twice? it's the same bloody film!! and get this: they actually watch DVD submissions AT HOME! I wish I got paid so much money to watch a film!
This is the start of a revolution for independent film makers and distributors across the UK and Ireland - and even the world - in a bid to get as many signings as possible, to present to the money hungry BBFC to force them to bring their costs
of ratings down.
With ridiculous rates and double charges for the same film to go to DVD and cinema, it is time to put a stop to this. The amazing people at the IFCO can do it - offering a safe 250 Euro for a limited release of 1000 copies in the first year. Why
can't the BBFC offer the same?
Please support this fight and help us get as many names (and roles in the film world) as possible to help indie film makers deliver to you, works of passion, dedication and enjoyment... (more than the average Hollywood flick can do these days)