High-end TV production in the UK and UK films surpasses PS6.3bn in 2022. However, indie film production is down 31%

Source: Netflix

Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth II in ‘The Crown’

A record PS6.3bn was spent on film and high-end television (HETV) production in the UK in 2022, up 11.1% on 2021; but spend on independent UK filmmaking dropped by 31% year on year.

According to figures published today (February 2) by the BFI’s Research and Statistics Unit, film and high-end production was up PS1.8bn on 2019, the last full pre-pandemic year.

However, spend on independent UK filmmaking dropped to PS173.6m, representing only 9% of the total spend.

Inward investment films and HETV delivered a record PS5.4bn, representing 86% of the combined production spend. In 2021 the spend was PS5.1bn.

Total film production reached PS2bn, up 27% on 2021. This figure is 31% higher than 2021. However, there was a 31% decrease in the amount spent on UK films. The co-production spend accounted to PS59.1m. This is 3% of total film spending and a 3.5% increase over 2021.

.HETV production spend rose 4.9% to PS4.3bn. However, this figure does not include the PS938.8m spent for film productions for streaming platforms. Statistics also show an increase in investment in single-length productions for streaming platforms. A total of 22 single UK and inward investment productions contributed PS938.8m, a 23% increase on 2021, with productions including Steve McQueen’s

Blitz and Ridley Scott’s Napoleon for Apple, and Emerald Fennell’s Saltburn for Amazon Prime Video.Films increase

Some 220 films went into production in the UK in 2022, 11 more than was reported for 2021. One hundred of these were local UK features, and included Georgia Oakley’s

Blue Jean, Philip Barantini’s Accused, Amrou Al-Kadhi’s Layla and Karim Ainouz’s Firebrand.Thirty UK-international co-productions, running at the highest spend level since 2013, included Ken Loach’s

The Old Oak, Jessica Hausner’s Club Zero and Nora Fingscheidt’s The Outrun.US studios continued to see the UK as a leading production hub, with a 31% increase on 2021 spend to PS1.4bn. Titles included Greta Gerwig’s

Barbie and Bong Joon Ho’s provisionally-titled Mickey 17 for Warner Bros; and Louis Leterrier’s Fast X for Universal.Non-US studio inward investment films also saw an increase in spend, up 34% to PS382.2m.

The PS4.3bn UK spend on HETV production was the second-highest on record, down 3% on 2021’s PS4.4bn. This figure was up 88% on 2019’s pre-pandemic PS2.3bn.

In 2022, 195 HETV productions began principal photography, of which 55% were inward investment, 41% were local UK projects and 4% were co-productions.

The 80 local UK projects is the second-highest number since the introduction of the high-end TV tax relief, again topped only by 2021.

The PS3.6bnn HETV inward investment total is also 3% down on 2021 but is more than double 2019’s PS1.8bn. The second season of Amazon Studios’

The Lord Of The Rings The Rings Of Power was also an HETV series on inward investment. The first series was shot in New Zealand. “Today’s record-breaking figures in UK film and TV production are great news for our sector and the UK economy, and underlines our industry’s success at a global level,” stated Ben Roberts (BFI chief executive). To meet production demand, further investment in studio space UK-wide will continue to build on this economic success and create more jobs. Further investment in expanding studio space UK-wide to meet production demand will continue to build on this economic success and create further jobs.”

“To see audiences coming back to cinemas after the pandemic for

Top Gun: Maverick, Roald Dahl’s Matilda The Musical and independent films such as Belfast shows that film and the big screen experience is very important to people. But while independent UK films such as Aftersun and The Banshees Of Inisherin are enjoying awards and audience success worldwide and are clearly essential to the creativity of our industry and for UK culture, the continuing downturn in production spend on UK indie film means we need to stand behind the recommendations of the Economic Review of UK Independent Film to ensure it survives and thrives.” “As today’s figures demonstrate, the UK inward investment film and TV industry continues to experience remarkable growth in production, generating billions of pounds for the UK economy and thousands of new jobs in production hubs throughout the UK’s nations and regions,” said Adrian Wootton, chief executive of the British Film Commission. “It’s a testament to the strength and diversity of our regional and metropolitan offer that so many major film and high-end TV productions base themselves in the UK. The UK has the right levels of ongoing investment in skills and support infrastructure to attract major international film and television productions. That figure is 57% up on 2021, but still 26% down on the last full pre-pandemic year of 2019 when it was PS1.36bn.


Top Gun: Maverick

was the highest-grossing 2022 title with PS83.7m, representing 9% of the total box office. The top 20 collectively grossed PS644.6m, representing 67% of the total, and up 46% on the top 20 figure for 2021.

Sequels or franchise titles accounted for 12 of the top 20 titles, with Elvis coming in as the highest non-franchise or sequel film in 10

th with PS27.7m.Among independent titles, Kenneth Branagh’s Belfast led the way with PS15.6m. With PS15.6m, there was a significant gap to Martin McDonagh’s

The Banshees of Inisherin; and another jump to Operation Mincemeatand The Duchess10 in third place with PS5.3m. These are the gaps that independent producers and cinema exhibitors alike will be looking to fill in the coming year, to avoid an over-reliance on blockbuster titles.The top 20 independent UK titles brought in PS69.2m, accounting for 92% of the total for all independent UK titles.There was a drop in the share of box office for UK-qualifying films from 41.1% to 29.6% in 2022, largely accounted for by No Time To Die

‘s strong contribution in 2021.

Box office figures from the BFI were provided by CAA and Comscore.Ellie Bamber to play supermodel Kate Moss in Moss & Freud

for GFC Films, Cornerstone



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