movieScope columnist, industry analyst and film consultant Michael Gubbins has been named as the new chairman of the Film Agency for Wales.
Gubbins, who worked as the editor of Screen International between 2004 and 2009 and whose latest 24 FPS Industry Insider column is in movieScope issue 29, replaces Peter Edwards as chairman.
Edwards terms was coming to an end, allowing Gubbins the opportunity to step in. Gubbins will not relocate to Cardiff, instead travelling regularly from London.
Welsh cinema can welcome a knowledgable voice on the way online platforms are altering the traditional relationship between cinema audience and filmmakers; Gubbins currently runs consultancy company MCG Film and Media, specialising in digital content. He wrote in his latest column “Digital Demands”:
“The film industry tends to suffer from what futurist Paul Saffro calls ‘macromyopia’ – a tendency to overestimate the short-term effects of digital change, and to underestimate the long term. And teh long term is now bearing down on the industry at a rate of knots. The next few years will see a series of innovations, infrastructure improvements and technical breakthroughs that will remove some of the barriers to digital growth.”
Gubbins has plenty of history in Wales. After studying at the University of Glamorgan, he worked as the news editor of the South Wales Evening Post in Swansea before directing a short film in Cardiff.
Gubbins said he was “Looking forward to working with the chief executive Pauline Burt and the excellent team at FAW, and with the other members of an experienced board, in ensuring that film in Wales makes its mark at home on the international stage.”
Peter Edwards added: “This is a time of great importance for the Welsh film sector with new opportunities arising through increased lottery funding post-Olympics; newly defined strategic priorities from the BFI; and significant on-going change to business models, with increased digital uptake.”