Studio giant boost to British films
Pinewood studios is hoping to replicate the success of The King's Speech by investing millions of pounds into British films.
Pinewood, which is home to the James Bond and Harry Potter franchises, said it will invest up to a 20 per cent stake in films with production budgets of around £2 million and intends to buy in to about four films each year.
The chosen films will have access to available space at its studios in Buckinghamshire and Surrey.
The group hopes the selected Brit flicks will echo the success of Oscar-winner The King's Speech, which cost £9 million to make and has grossed more than 245 million US dollars (£150 million) since its release.
Chief executive Ivan Dunleavy said: "Although our financial commitment to each film will be relatively small, we can, in addition, offer British films access to the world-class facilities and production expertise at Pinewood and Shepperton Studios which would normally be beyond their budget."
The announcement comes as the 75-year-old studios, also home to television shows such as Dancing On Ice and Dragons' Den, posted a 31 per cent increase in pre-tax profits to £5.8 million in the year to December 31.
The group's film division, which offers 34 stages, including the largest in Europe, had a successful 2010, driving the gains in total revenue as it hosted several big-budget movies at its studios.
The fourth instalment of the Pirates Of The Caribbean franchise, starring Johnny Depp, the final Harry Potter film and a forthcoming adaptation of Charlotte Bronte's 19th century novel Jane Eyre were all filmed at the studios in 2010.