Exclusive: Scott Adkins on the challenge facing indie action films

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Scott Adkins questions how independent action films can get financed in the current climate, as he reveals he has various projects in the works.

Available on demand and on DVD this week is Payback, the latest independent action film starring UK action powerhouse Scott Adkins. He’s reunited with director Jesse V Johnson for the movie, and in the new issue of Film Stories magazine, the pair talk through the making of the film, and making such movies on a fraction of the budget of big Hollywood productions. Those familiar with Adkins’ work will be all too aware that he doesn’t skimp on the action.

But he’s also candid about the difficulty now facing independent productions, in the post-Covid world. Obviously people’s health and wellbeing is more important than feature films, and we want to put all this in context. We asked him, however, to talk us through the challenges he now faces in getting the film projects he’s been juggling moving.

“That’s completely screwed everything up. I’ve got various films in development, a list of stuff I’ve been trying to find time to do, but now you can’t do anything. It’s very worrying”, he told us. “The cost of making movies is going to shoot up now, all the extra things that are going to be put into place, the PPE and people coming in on staggered times and the tests. It’s very worrying if you’re making films that already have a tight budget. I don’t see how it’s gonna be even possible, to be honest”.

He added that for independent filmmakers, “how are you gonna get insurance? How’s that going to happen? You can’t get insurance for COVID-19. So if somebody in your cast gets COVID-19 you’re gonna have to shut down your production and you don’t have insurance, how much is that going to cost you as a producer? You’re not going to take that risk. Surely not.”.

Again – to put the conversation in fuller context – there’s no question that making sure human beings are well is top priority. Just for those trying to make independent action films, it’s become a very uncertain time.

Payback is available now. The full interview is in issue 17 of Film Stories.


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