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Film producers finally get meeting with Economic Development

Film producers finally get meeting with Economic Development

Thursday 02 June 2022

Film producers finally get meeting with Economic Development

Thursday 02 June 2022

The producers of the film 'Toilers of the Sea' will finally get the chance to present their case for States' support to the Committee for Economic Development next week.

Dave Shanks and Joy Mellins, pictured top right, will meet Deputy Neil Inder's Committee next Wednesday. They said that securing a meeting date after weeks of unsuccessful requests to meet had renewed their optimism about the potential to film locally.

"This is great news. We are optimistic that the Toilers film can remain in Guernsey, where it belongs," said Mr Shanks.

On Wednesday of last week, Deputy Inder, pictured top left, told the States' Assembly that the producers of the film had not requested to meet his Committee.

The following day, the Committee for Economic Development conceded that Deputy Inder received an e mail on 15 May in which the producers of the film asked to meet him in person. Express also reported on another request to meet, which was sent to Deputy Inder on 5 May.

After finding the e mail, the Committee said: "Contact will be made with the Toilers of the Sea producers and, out of courtesy, an arrangement will be made for them to meet with members of the Committee."


Pictured: Producers of Toilers of the Sea propose to involve Castle Cornet in their project if they can obtain support to make the film in Guernsey.

Ahead of their meeting with the Committee on Wednesday, Mr Shanks and Ms Mellins will hold a question and answer event on Tuesday evening, at which members of the public will be able to find out more about the film and the producers' hope to film it in Guernsey. 

"The questions and answers will be for investors and supporters alike. It will not be a pitch for finance nor a presentation, but an opportunity for islanders to meet the producers and ask any questions they wish," said Mr Shanks.

"There is an open invitation to all islanders and we hope we can provide some clarity to recent events and allay any concerns."

The question and answer event will be held at 18:00 at the Guernsey Yacht Club on 7 June.


Pictured: Film producers Dave Shanks and Joy Mellins are keen to answer islander questions about the Toilers of the Sea film. 

In their email to Deputy Inder on 15 May, the producers said they were seeking the support of the States in the form of "a letter of commitment of anything between £500,000 to £2million where the money will only be called upon once we have letters of commitment from other individual investors totalling £8million". 

"As an investor in the film, the States would be in shared first position recoupment for all monies received from its international distribution," they said.

The Committee's position on funding the film was first set out in a letter to the producers of the film 15 months ago and reiterated since.

In February 2021, the Committee told the producers: "As you are aware, the previous Committee provided £25,000 in development funding. Unfortunately, the Committee does not have access to significant amounts of uncommitted funds and, given the inevitable risk attached to a project of this nature, does not feel it would be appropriate to invest taxpayers' funds in this way. The Committee's view is that you will need to seek investment finance from private individuals or corporates."


“We find it very difficult to reconcile what Dep. Inder said with the facts"

Deputy finds emails showing film producers did ask to meet him

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