AMC will premiere An Accidental Studio, a new documentary which charts the creation of the ground-breaking British film studio, HandMade Films on 4 May at 9pm, exclusively to BT customers. Featuring never-before-seen interviews with key players, the documentary captures an extraordinary moment in film history through the eyes of the filmmakers and actors as well as the man who started it all, former Beatle and music legend George Harrison. The feature-length documentary is AMC UK’s first original production and will premiere in first window on all AMC channels internationally later this year.
AMC is available in the UK free of charge to BT customers as number 332 on BT TV, and to BT Sport Pack subscribers on Sky channel 192. AMC is also available in HD on both BT TV and Satellite with an HD subscription. The documentary will also be available on demand on BT TV.
Coming to the rescue of Life of Brian when the money fell out at the last minute, George Harrison offered to fund the entire movie, mortgaging his house and his office to do so. As a Monty Python fan, he credited the Pythons’ humour for saving his sanity whilst he was a Beatle. Now it was his turn to pay them back. The film was a massive hit, so successful in fact that they decided to set up a company – HandMade Films.
In a rare moment in film history, HandMade dominated the British movie scene with its ethos of making and releasing maverick films that everyone else had rejected, from Life of Brian, The Long Good Friday, Time Bandits and Alan Bennett’s triple BAFTA winner, A Private Function to Withnail and I and the Oscar®-nominated Mona Lisa. Harrison’s generosity in helping others fulfil their dreams and his hands-off approach allowed filmmakers to shine in their work. As its films won awards and launched careers, HandMade became more than a happy accident. It became a celebration of integrity and collaboration.
With unreleased archive interviews and footage with Harrison, new and exclusive interviews with BAFTA winner Michael Palin, Golden Globe and Oscar nominee Terry Gilliam, Oscar nominee Richard E. Grant and Oscar winner Neil Jordan, and unseen interviews with Golden Globe and BAFTA winner Bob Hoskins, An Accidental Studio explores HandMade’s baptism of fire and the risks it took in producing uniquely crafted, intelligent films. Additional interviews in the film include Bruce Robinson, Ray Cooper, Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, Cathy Tyson, Brenda Vaccaro, A Martinez, Richard Loncraine and Jonathan Lynn.
“HandMade Films created some of Britain’s most iconic films and gave a global platform to artists who continue to have a strong impact on popular culture today,” commented Executive Producer Harold Gronenthal, EVP of Programming and Operations, AMC/SundanceTV Global. “This new documentary is AMC UK’s first original production, and we’re excited to partner with BT, Bill & Ben Productions, Propellor Films and DCD Rights to showcase the important legacy of HandMade Films with AMC’s audiences internationally.”
Co-Directors and Co-Producers for AMC Networks International are Ben Timlett and Bill Jones of Bill & Ben Productions and Kim Leggatt. Executive Producers are Gronenthal, Bruce Kenyon and Nicky Davies Williams, CEO of DCD Rights. DCD Rights distributes the film in the US and internationally outside of the AMC territories.