ASTOUNDED residents in the city centre have hit out at the council’s decision to give £150,000 to Warner Bros to film a major blockbuster in Glasgow. 

Locals claim that shooting movies in the area causes significant disruption to businesses and is a nuisance to homeowners.

They argue that large-scale film firms should be paying the local authority the cash instead as Glasgow “proves to be a popular choice already for filmmakers”. 

The issue was raised by locals at a recent meeting held by Blythswood and Broomielaw Community Council

Glasgow Times:

Alex Cheung, chairman of the group, said: “Why are we giving out incentives to have film production companies in the city when the city has proved to be a popular choice already for filmmakers?

“There is much disruption to the city during those times and some businesses have had to close temporarily due to access restrictions. 

“Instead, if the filmmakers were to compensate the city for the inconvenience then at least the proceeds from that could be reinvested back into the local communities.”

It emerged last month that the local authority would be making the funds available to incentivise the production – the first of its kind to take place in Glasgow. 

Glasgow Times:

Warner Bros applied to the council to support the costs of filming activity and to establish an office base in the city centre for the duration of its stay. 

Despite concerns about the impact this could have on local businesses, council leader Susan Aitken said the initiative would bring “millions of pounds to the city’s economy”.

She said: “While it’s great fun for a lot of people to see film and broadcasting productions in Glasgow, this is very much an economic story – production of this size brings millions of pounds to the city’s economy.

“What is significant about this is that it allows the entire production to be made in Glasgow – a first for the city – and confirms our place as a location of choice for major productions, and one that can compete with others in the UK and abroad.

“During this time of economic recovery and renewal, this economic activity is both welcome and important.”

Glasgow Times:

Meanwhile, those who reside in the Merchant City and Trongate argued that previous film sets restricted access to shops and cafes and, in turn, resulted in short-term closures. 

Dr Duncan MacLaren, chairman of the area’s community council, said: “I have canvassed views among our local small cafe businesses. 

“The owners say that they don’t gain extra custom from film crews and ancillary staff during filming because the film companies bring their own catering vans – which also have to be parked in our parking spaces. 

“In addition, access to local premises can be restricted, thus losing them custom. There also has to be a limit to filming in the city centre.”

Glasgow Times:

Glasgow has recently accommodated filming for scenes in The Flash, Batman and Indiana Jones.

In August, we exclusively told how locals claimed to have been left with “strong migraines” from excessive generator gas and “sleepless nights” after the machines were supposedly kept on overnight when filming of The Flash took place.

Dr MacLaren added: “With COP26, we are about to see the biggest disruption to our lives. If it really does make serious steps to save our planet, it is worthwhile but the nuisance value of such events to the long-suffering residents of Glasgow should not be underestimated.”

The name and genre of the Warner Bros film set to take place in Glasgow is yet to be revealed. 

Glasgow City Council said it plans to cooperate with residents and business owners to find "workable solutions" while the area is used for the major production. 

A spokeswoman said: “Major film and broadcast productions over the years has resulted in a £350million boost to Glasgow’s economy – in jobs for our citizens and for businesses.

“We will continue to engage with residents and businesses to lessen the impact to householders and daily life where filming is planned and find workable solutions.”