Movie and TV filming help bring £214 million to Glasgow economy, new report finds

The screen sector has helped generate almost £215 million to the Glasgow economy, according to a new report.

The report, commissioned by Screen Scotland, provides the first clear picture of the economic value of screen sector across Scotland, and predicts significant further growth across the next decade

The new study found that the screen sector, including movie and TV filming, contributed £214.9 million to the Glasgow economy, equivalent to 3720 full-time jobs in 2019.

That was before Glasgow hosted filming for Indiana Jones 5, The Batman (scenes at the Necropolis featured at the end of the 2022 film) and The Flash.

Batgirl was filmed in Glasgow.
Batgirl was filmed in Glasgow.
Batgirl was filmed in Glasgow.

Batgirl became the first major production to be filmed entirely in Glasgow when shooting took place earlier this year.

In total, the sector contributed £567.6million to Scotland’s economy in 2019, providing 10,280 full-time equivalent jobs.

The wide-ranging study analyses the economic contribution of the screen sector value chain - film and TV development and production, animation, VFX and post-production, film and TV distribution, TV broadcast, film exhibition - and extends into the supply chains that provide services at each stage of the content process, including facilities, equipment, transport, catering and accommodation. Beyond that direct supply chain, the study looks at where the screen sector stimulates economic activity elsewhere in the Scottish economy: screen tourism, the education and training sectors and infrastructure.

The report covers 2019, the year before the onset of Covid and the first full year following the establishment of Screen Scotland in late 2018. A follow up study of 2021, the year in which the current boom in Scotland-based production started in earnest, is in progress and will be published in early 2023.

Isabel Davis, Screen Scotland’s executive director, said: “A strategy for the Scottish screen sector needs robust numbers – they reveal where there's room for growth, the interdependencies of related sub sectors, along with the spillover benefits to tourism, retail, hospitality and construction.

“This is the first true benchmark of the value of Scotland’s screen sector and it’s far larger than has been captured by previous studies. Better still, we see the potential to double GVA by 2030, if investment in local content, production skills and infrastructure continues.

“Ultimately our goal is to strengthen locally originated production and the many industries that surround it. The positive interaction between large scale incoming production and the local sector, recently evidenced in productions such as Good Omens and Batgirl, is an important part of that picture.”

Culture Secretary Angus Robertson added: “This report shows the exceptional growth that Scotland’s film and TV industries have experienced in recent years; generating millions for the economy, creating thousands of jobs and providing opportunities for skills and talent development in roles across the sector.

“This comprehensive study demonstrates the value of the screen sector to other parts of Scotland’s economy, including hospitality and tourism. It highlights the important place that screen has in generating and sustaining employment and the vital role of public service broadcasters in contributing to that growth.

“Supporting the screen sector is a key priority for the Scottish Government and we are committed to ensuring that this growth continues to develop our sustainable creative economy, making Scotland an attractive place to live and work for people across the creative industries.”