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The British Film Industry

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The British Film Industry

A laudatory item on the mid-1930s British film industry makes this issue of the cinemagazine fascinating for film fans.

Non-Fiction 1936 22 mins

Overview

A lengthy and laudatory item on the state of the British film industry in the mid-1930s helps to make this issue of the March of Time cinemagazine particularly fascinating for film fans. With lots of behind the scenes studio footage, including Jessie Matthews being directed by Victor Saville, and numerous clips of box-office favourites, the item argues that Britain had become just as good at producing films as Hollywood. The venerable figure of H.G. Wells is even roped in to bang the British drum.

Ironically, it all came crashing down shortly after this issue was released: beginning in late 1936, an economic crisis in the British film industry led to a period of financial retrenchment, with numerous companies being dissolved and even studios closing. The other two items in this issue look at the work of the Civilian Conservation Corps in the USA, a programme designed to find employment for America's youth, and an examination of the penal colonies of French Guiana, including the notorious Devil's Island.