“The U.K. creative sector has been a strong and vibrant contributor to the economy — this is likely to be devastating for us.” — Michael Ryan, the chairman of the Independent Film and Television Alliance
According to Ryan, “The decision to exit the European Union is a major blow to the U.K. film and TV industry,” he said in a statement made to Variety on Friday, the 24th of June. “Producing films and television programs is a very expensive and very risky business and certainty about the rules affecting the business is a must.”
Though the 'Brexit' vote went through less than 48 hours ago, it has already raised plenty of unanswered and unforeseen questions until the near 4% win was announced. According to the numbers, it seems the U.K. is almost split in two in regards to their stance on leaving the European Union. According to Sam Byford, a reporter for The Verge, "Much of what happens post-Brexit is clouded in uncertainty following a largely negative campaign that suggested many people didn't know what they were voting for. But the creative industry in Britain was largely behind remaining in the European Union; almost 300 prominent artists, actors, writers, and musicians signed a letter backing the Remain campaign." Even Harry Potter creator, J. K. Rowling, took to twitter to react and post her disappointment.
This result is sending huge shock-waves within U.S. film and tv productions who shoot outside the states, such as HBO's highest rated and most watched series, Game of Thrones. Of course the biggest worry for studios is the potential new prices and legal hoops to jump through to acquire shooting locations since Game of Thrones has used other E.U. shooting grounds like Croatia, Spain, and Malta (although scenes have also been filmed in the non-member state, Iceland, in addition to Northern Ireland).
On the other hand, James Hibberd of Entertainment Weekly suggests there's nothing to worry about when it comes to our beloved Westeros and the Seven Kingdoms in these last two coming seasons. He makes the case that even though the mothership of GoT's production is in Northern Ireland, (and Northern Ireland is part of the UK) and the European Regional Development Fund is part of a European program to support and finance productions to film in Europe, Thrones’ funding will not be getting cut since HBO has not used any money from this fund in the last two seasons regardless.
Other fans and a few industry insiders seem to whole-heartedly disagree and mention, "The Brexit result was pretty much the UK's Red Wedding. Only worse." Unfortunately in cases as fresh as this, only time will tell. So far we're advised we have nothing to worry about, while other EU/UK folk are still asking the existential question, Where am I?
What do you think about the 'Brexit' vote and its possible entertainment industry impact? Answer in the comments below!