Belfast Telegraph

The Fall: An ideal calling card to producers around the world

By Amanda Ferguson

The Fall is a perfect example of how important the arts are to showcasing Northern Ireland and its blossoming creative industry.

The BBC and RTE co-production does much more than entertain the millions of viewers it has reached across the UK, Ireland and in Australia, New Zealand, Europe, North America and elsewhere.

The second series of Allan Cubitt's award-winning TV crime drama set in Belfast - starring Co Down actor Jamie Dornan and American actress Gillian Anderson - has just ended on a cliffhanger with fans desperate for a third series. The Fall demonstrates to a wide range of producers across the globe the impressive infrastructure we have in place to attract and produce big-budget, quality productions.

It also provides work for local actors and crew, as well as presenting the city in a positive light to international audiences.

A variety of TV shows and films have highlighted our growing creative industry to great effect in recent years including gothic horror Dracula Untold, the Oscar-winning movie Philomena, HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones and hugely popular police drama Line of Duty.

Warnings have been issued by a series of high-profile entertainment figures in recent weeks about the devastating impact proposed cuts to the arts budget will have not only for the creative industry here but also the communities it serves in terms of entertainment and peace-building.

Bafta-winning director Paul Greengrass, the man behind films such as Bloody Sunday and Captain Phillips, visited Northern Ireland last year as part of Londonderry's City of Culture celebrations. He was inspired by the work of the Nerve Centre in the city.

He said the filmmaking industry was now "an established fixture in the international movie landscape" but warned "we must protect what has been built and we must continue to develop it".

Trainspotting director Danny Boyle and actors Ray Winstone and Stephen Rea have all joined the chorus imploring Stormont to save the arts.

And as Coleraine actor James Nesbitt recently said: "Without the arts, we're just left with politics and we don't want that."

To respond to the public consultation on the arts budget see

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