The Impact DCP Goes To The BBFC For Classification

The final DCP* for The Impact is coming out just over 100GB, fitting nicely on an old SSD ripped from a dead laptop.

And it’s now time to submit the film for BBFC classification. This is a legal requirement if we are to show the film publically, and also part of the evidence trail for the World Record attempts we will make at the premiere. The most directors and most writers on a feature film.

What certificate will it get? Well there’s no sex, drugs use (well maybe there kind of is, but you can judge yourself at the premiere), no bad language or violence. But the themes are thought provoking and some sequences are emotionally intense. My guess would be a 15 but I suspect I am also living in a different era and it will likely get a 12 or 12A.

Much like seeing a book you have written in a Waterstones, getting the BBFC certificate and seeing it on the front of your film is a kind of sign that the film has finally made it into the wild.

Also, rather happily the BBFC seems to have been overhauled with a new pricing structure.

For a film like The Impact, to get it classified used to cost around £1,500, maybe more. Now small indie films can be classified for a flat fee of £500, so long as they are showing on 20 screens or less. This is great news for indie filmmakers and lowers another barrier to entry for theatrical distribution.

*What is a DCP? This is the digital file played back in a cinema and is mastered to a very specific and rigorous format. It’s short for Digital Cinema Package. It can be encryted with smart keys that will lock playback to times and locations – useful for massive films of course. For indie filmmakers it’s now pretty simple and can even be hosted on your Dropbox or Google drive accoutns for download at festivals.  Short films will very often be sent on USB memory sticks. It’s important to get the film to the venue early so the projectionist can check that…

  1. They can open your drive.
  2. They can copy the film and it plays back as expected. Ideally you can even check this yourself.
  3. To avoid panic before hand when both of the above inevitably happen!
  4. One tip, do check sound levels as adverts can be played loud and so theatres sometimes turn the sound down and NOT back up for your film that is not mixed to within a DB of its life (like some adverts are).
  5. Worth a note, you will need a DCP for a trailer if you plan to show in cinemas too.
  6. Put a stciker on the drive with EVERTHING on it. Including your contact details.

See you at the premiere. It’s all getting VERY real! Tickets here…

Chris Jones


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