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Edinburgh Tourism Can Benefit From New Film

New Hollywood blockbuster to boost Edinburgh tourism

Sep 13, 2011

It is tipped to be bigger than Braveheart.

And it looks like Edinburgh could be about to cash in on the latest Hollywood blockbuster, with early talk of a star-studded premiere in the Capital and a massive tourism drive in support.

The Evening News can reveal high-level talks have already taken place at Edinburgh Castle between executives from Disney/Pixar and representatives of a range of organisations, including VisitScotland, to see how new film Brave can boost the coffers of the Capital and the country.

The 3D animated film, a fairytale set in the Highlands, features voice performances from a host of Scottish stars, including Billy Connolly, Robbie Coltrane and Kevin McKidd.

It is hoped that the film will give a major boost to the Scottish economy, even greater than that generated by Braveheart.

The possibility of a premiere in the Capital next year is thought to have been discussed already, although those close to the project have remained tight-lipped about the prospect.

It is clear, however, that VisitScotland is planning a major drive on the back of the expected blockbuster.

Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, who took part in the talks, said: "The meeting between VisitScotland and The Walt Disney Company at Edinburgh Castle was to discuss potential opportunities around the upcoming release of Brave.

"This meeting is among a series of early discussions that we have had around how Scotland can best maximise the huge potential that this film has."

City events champion Councillor Steve Cardownie said he thought the Capital could reap great rewards from the renewed interest in Scotland prompted by movie-goers whenever different parts of the country featured in major films.

He said: "This will be fantastic for the city. We've featured in several movies in the past and so has Glasgow, it's a great boost for the economy and it helps maintain Edinburgh's pole position in the international cultural map.

"Even if it's based in the Highlands, it will benefit us.

"People will want to come in to the Capital, anything that promotes Scotland promotes Edinburgh, and anything that promotes Edinburgh promotes Scotland. They go hand in glove.

"We're the gateway to Scotland, so it's fantastic. We're hopefully going to be able to be at the forefront of this and to benefit."

Brave tells the story of flame-haired Merida - played by Kelly Macdonald - the young daughter of King Fergus (Connolly) and Queen Elinor (Emma Thompson). A skilled archer, Merida defies ancient customs and the lords of the land, inadvertently unleashing chaos - but is aided by an eccentric old witch, played by Julie Walters.

It is the first fairytale film by Pixar, known for hits such as the Toy Story series, Up, Wall-E, Finding Nemo and Monsters, Inc.

It is also the first of the its productions to feature a female lead character.

New Hollywood blockbuster to boost Edinburgh tourism
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