Comment: Creative jobs worth nearly £3bn a year

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the plans to build a Scottish film studio at the foot of the Pentlands will send a buzz of excitement around the Capital.

Everyone loves a bit of glamour and you don’t get much more glamorous than the world of international film-making.

Just imagine how much we’d enjoy seeing Brad Pitt pop in to the Flotterstone Inn for a bite to eat during a break in filming – or even Daniel Craig picking up a
little something from Costco.

Ok, that’s probably stretching the plotline too far, but a major international film studio in the Lothians would still be seriously good news for the local and national economy.

Blockbusters like Skyfall and World War Z have been filmed in Scotland, showing the potential which the country has to attract some of the world’s biggest film-makers.

The exposure which these films bring to Scotland – and potentially Edinburgh and the Lothians in particular – is enormous, helping attract tourists and cementing the country’s reputation as a great place to live.

Then there are the jobs, and not just the gofers. There are the carpenters, costume designers, set painters, chefs, and so on.

A hint of the size of the potential rewards can be found in a recent Creative Scotland report on the future of the nation’s artistic industries. The creative industries, it says, already support more than 65,000 creative jobs in Scotland worth nearly £3 billion a year to the national economy.

Of course we have been here before in the 1990s with Sir David Murray’s Sir Sean Connery-backed plans for a film studio at Hermiston. This time it feels that there might be more of an appetite from the Scottish Government to support such a venture.

It is early days yet. We are still a long way from seeing any kind of film made in Midlothian, but it is going to be fascinating to watch how this story develops.