Tuesday, 15 July 2008

News from Virgin Media

Four Weddings Beats Life of Brian in British Film Poll

Four Weddings and a Funeral named best British movie of all time in Virgin Media Shorts Survey

Richard Curtis’ 1994 blockbuster Four Weddings and a Funeral has been named the greatest British film of all time in a survey for Virgin Media Shorts. Beating Monty Python’s classic Life of Brian by just one per cent, rom-com Four Weddings and a Funeral, starring Hugh Grant as hapless romantic Charles, topped the poll with 22 per cent of votes, making it the public’s favourite British film ever.

The Virgin Media Shorts survey, which today (30th June) marks the last day film makers can submit their short films to the competition, sees an eclectic mix of films make up the top ten. The top five is completed with Danny Boyle’s cult classic Trainspotting (15 per cent), the latest James Bond Casino Royale (10 per cent) and gangster flick Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (eight per cent). The remaining top ten includes a mixture of old and new including the 1962 classic Lawrence of Arabia (eight per cent) together with last year’s war romance Atonement (four per cent).

With almost one third of the votes, the poll revealed that Dame Judi Dench is the best British actress of all time followed by fellow Dame, Helen Mirren (14 per cent) and Julie Walters (14 per cent). The best British actor was a closely fought contest with former Bond Sir Sean Connery and Hannibal hell-raiser Sir Anthony Hopkins receiving 22 per cent of votes each. Hugh Grant, who became a household name after starring in Four Weddings and a Funeral, was in fourth place with 11 per cent of nominations behind Get Carter star Sir Michael Caine (12 per cent).

James Kydd, managing director of brand and marketing at Virgin Media said, “The debate around the best British film of all time is always a great talking point and our top ten is no exception. Seeing so many fantastic films in the list is testament to British film talent and that’s exactly why Virgin Media has set up the Shorts competition to champion undiscovered British film makers.”

Virgin Media Shorts is the first ever short film competition to run across four screens (TV, cinema, mobile and the internet) and has already seen over 1,000 entries for the £30,000 prize since its launch on 1st May. To mark the final day for submissions, today also sees the announcement of the judging panel who will be presiding over the competition. The confirmed line-up includes:

• Oscar-winning stage and film actor, Kevin Spacey
• Founder and chairman of the Virgin Group, Sir Richard Branson
• Bend It Like Beckham director, Gurinder Chadha
• Confetti and Green Wing actor, Stephen Mangan
• Oscar-nominated short film director, Daniel Barber
• Film critic, James King
• Total Film editor, Nev Pierce
• Head of the New Cinema Fund of the UK Film Council, Lenny Crooks
• Chairman of the panel and Virgin Media’s CEO of Content, Malcolm Wall

To submit a short film for Virgin Media Shorts, or to simply watch and rate the films, visit www.virginmediashorts.co.uk


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