How to Qualify as British’: UK Film Policy and the Definition of 'Nationality

Despite a turn away from the 'national' in much contemporary film analysis, discourses of the 'national' continue to structure the ways in which films are categorised, funded and rendered eligible for state support. By focusing upon the history of British film policy, this paper will consider how legal definitions of a ‘British’ film have informed both economic and cultural policy objectives and facilitated a range of film production. In doing so, the presentation will not only indicate how ‘national’ discourses and practices have continued to structure the economic and cultural dynamics of contemporary 'British’'filmmaking but also, due to the ways in which nationality has been defined, to support - as much as oppose - 'transnational' and globalising trends.

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