Ridley Scott Presents…

The BBC reports some good news for the Northern Ireland film-making industry.  From the statement on the Northern Ireland Screen website

Academy-Award nominated director and producer Ridley Scott (Prometheus, Blade Runner) and Scott Free London are partnering with Orchard Media and Focus Features International on a slate of six genre low-budget feature films over a period of three years. Ridley Scott will executive produce and present the slate which will be focused primarily on horror, thriller and science fiction. The films will be in association with Northern Ireland Screen and will shoot primarily in Northern Ireland using resident crew, cast, services and facilities. Focus Features International will handle world-wide sales.

Ridley Scott said: “Our target is to create a structure that enables filmmakers to push boundaries and to excite audiences. Our proposed model of filmmaking allows us to give directors the opportunity to really innovate through narrative, production techniques and distribution strategies.”

Focus Features International’s Alison Thompson commented: “There’s an appetite and market for high-concept low budget films – that combined with Ridley Scott’s pedigree will be very attractive to international buyers.”

Scott Free London’s Liza Marshall and Jack Arbuthnott said: “This slate is a fantastic opportunity to work in a genuinely liberating and creative way to make distinctive, commercial films.”

The BBC report adds

The series is titled Ridley Scott Presents and is funded through the Northern Ireland Screen Fund, supported by Invest NI.

It has also secured funding from the European Regional Development Fund.

The deal was brokered by Orchard Media, an organisation that raises capital for media companies and which has been involved in the production and financing of more than 125 feature films, including Twilight and The Iron Lady.

Northern Ireland Screen’s head of production, Andrew Reid, said: “We have been looking for a model which would allow us to forecast future production in Northern Ireland over the next few years.

“Orchard and Scott Free brought us a compelling proposition to complement our other large incoming productions, such as Game of Thrones.

“It also potentially provides an outlet for developing Northern Ireland creative talent.”