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QUOTA FILMS.

CONFERENCE URGED.

Plea for American

Co-operation.

Mr. Frederick Davies, gener manager of National Studios, Pag wood, said yesterday that the Ne South Wales Government should tal immediate action to determine wheth the American film companies wou comply with the spirit of the Fil

Quota Act.

He said that it was obvious that it w too late for the American companies to satis the demands of the legislation for the presei year, but that if the companies did not inter to do their best to co-operate it would 1 better to have a crisis now than have it i

nine months' time.

"Tile American companies could not fulJ the Act's demands by December, even if thi all now set to work with enthusiasm to pn duce pictures in Sydney," he added. "Thc have made no plans. There are not cnoug studios in existence to accommodate then It is a foregone conclusion that the end < the year will find them in default.

"Considering this, would not the Govcrr mont's best course be to call a conferenc immediately? If the Americans then showc themselves reasonable, it could be decide how many films it ls practicable for them t make this year.

"I must admit that my opinion is dictate by the interests of my own company. Bu we established National Studios under pro tection of the Government's promises, a expressed in the Quota Act; and I think w deserve some consideration.

"Our studio at Pagewood has been empt; since the end of September, It is costing u £ 100 a week for upkeep, even with the meres skeleton staff. At Christmas, we nearly cairn to terms with Columbia Pictures to produci

a successor to 'Rangle River.'

"Clarence Badger was all ready to come t< Australia again as director; and we had oui shooting script ready, down to the last detail But, Just when thc contract was near signing the Chief Secretary came out with his state- ment that the quota would not bo enforced

Columbia at once withdrew.

"Wc would go on and produce the picture ourselves, if we could. ? But, to be quite frank our company cannot obtain enough mone.v from the Investors. Prom the moment when "Tile Burgomeister' was rejected by the advisory board, with thc consequence that lt had to be shelved at a total loss, the public shied away from the business side of Aus- tralian motion pictures.

"We approve of the board and its activities as something which will eventually have a splendid effect. But the momentary result

has been disastrous.

ENCOURAGEMENT NEEDED.

"I do not think that anyone wants to sec production in Australia established per- manently as a mere offshoot of Hollywood. All that is required is that the Americans should give us a start. If they produce pictures here and make profits on them. Australian investors will soon hurry to join in with some of their own money.

"My company will welcome the building of studios by others, even though we have sunk o, good deal of capital In Pagewood. If we are crowded out by the stress of competition, wc shall gracefully retire. But we mean to hang on desperately so lang as the emptiness of our studio is the result of Government In- action-a situation that will surely be

remedied in time.

"Australia, as a country, has decided that films shall be made here, and that is enough. Sooner or later, the films will be made. A similar resolve was recorded in England, and now English films are a force to be reckoned

with.

"Thc American distributors do not seem to understand the British psychology. To defy thc British public in downright terms, as Mr. Reisman has done hi his statement, is only to confirm that public in its resolve. Tho Americans could gain a great deal of sym- pathy if they made some gesture of good- will at the present stage. I hope they will

do lt."

fin an interview, details of which were published on Monday, Mr. P. Reisman, vice president of R.K.O. Radio Pictures, said that, it would not bi profitable for the U.S.A. com- panies to produit films in Australia, and that in Great Britain last year the American companies lost £700.000 In the produ-tion of films to comply with the British quota.]

Digitisation generously supported by
Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation
Digitisation generously supported by

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