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First Minister Salmond hails announcement of Outlander's Cumbernauld production

Written by Christopher Mackie and Aileen Easton.
Published at 17:14 GMT on Thursday, July 25th, 2013.

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Picture: Scottish Government.
First Minister Alex Salmond has rolled out the red carpet for more television and movie productions to be filmed in Scotland as he outlined the package of expert support that helped entice a major US drama series to shoot on location in this country.

The First Minister confirmed that the Starz-Sony Pictures Television time-travel drama Outlander, which is to be filmed in locations in Scotland from September, had been supported by the expert consultancy of Creative Scotland, with help given to producers in identifying locations and studio space.

And Mr Salmond, speaking from Shetland during a trip to the islands for the first of the Scottish Government’s summer cabinet meetings, said Outlander would be given financial support from Creative Scotland to contribute to shooting and studio costs, with the aim of maximising the economic and creative benefits of the production and creating a lasting studio legacy that would enable further large-scale productions to be filmed in Scotland.

Speaking from Mareel - Shetland’s new arts hub that contains a cutting-edge broadcasting unit – the First Minister said Scotland was increasingly in demand as a filming location for TV and movies, as he cited high-profile productions such as BBC’s Shetland, World War Z starring Brad Pitt and the latest Bond movie Skyfall, all shot on location in this country.

And Mr Salmond said the “unparalleled breadth of scenery and landscapes” and screen industry expertise in this country would be backed by wholehearted government support to attract even more large-scale productions, bringing jobs and investment and securing invaluable worldwide media exposure for Scotland.
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The First Minister said: “Scotland has always been a popular location for major television and movie productions, with classic films such as Chariots of Fire and Local Hero using our country’s iconic scenery as a backdrop to tell some fantastic and memorable stories.

“In recent years, the reputation of Scotland as a movie and TV location has grown, with major productions now attracted not only by the stunning environment, first-class production crews and excellent facilities, but by the wholehearted support offered by the Scottish Government and its agencies.

“We have huge potential to make Scotland a major centre for film production, but competition is fierce and bodies such as Creative Scotland are doing all they can to ensure that some of the most high-profile screen productions are attracted to Scotland, bringing industry jobs and securing incredible, money-can’t-buy exposure for our breathtaking scenery.

“As a sci-fi fan, I am particularly thrilled that the time-travel drama Outlander has been brought to Scotland, supported by Creative Scotland expertise and funding to contribute to shooting and studio costs and ensure a lasting legacy from this production in Scotland in terms of skills and studio production.

“This announcement, which could see a crew of around 200 assembled and an estimated spend of £20 million in Scotland, is a wonderful endorsement of the scenery, talent and facilities on offer to film crews in this country and I can’t wait to see some distinctly Scottish locations on screen.

“With huge movies such as Skyfall and World War Z and fabulous TV drama such as Shetland already shot here, Scotland is poised to become a major location for TV and film production. My government and its agencies are absolutely committed to ensuring that we do all we can to attract the very best drama and keep Scotland firmly in focus when it comes to film production.”
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