The British Board of Film Classification (previously known as the British Board of Film Censors) was established in 1912 to ensure films remained free of 'indecorous dancing', 'references to controversial politics' and 'men and women in bed together', amongst other perceived indiscretions.
Today, it continues to censor and in some cases ban films, while UK law ensures that, in effect, a film cannot be released in British cinemas without a BBFC certificate.
Each certificate costs around £1000 for a feature film of average length. For many independent filmmakers, such a large upfront can prove prohibitively expensive.
Luckily, there’s a flipside to all of this: while filmmakers are required to pay the BBFC to certify their work, the BBFC are also required to sit through whatever we pay them to watch.
That’s why I’m Kickstarting a BBFC certificate for my new film Paint Drying — a single, unbroken shot of white paint drying on a brick wall. All the money raised by this campaign (minus Kickstarter's fees) will be put towards the cost of the certificate, so the final length of the film will be determined by how much money is raised here.
For instance, if we raise £108.59, the film will be one minute long. If we raise £526.90, it'll be an hour long. And so on.
Update: Here's a brilliant website built by Jon Ginn that tracks how long the film is, in real time.
Risks and challenges
I've shot fourteen continuous hours of footage, on crisp 4K digital video. This should provide enough material for the film, as long as this campaign doesn't raise more than £6057.
If the campaign surpasses that figure, I'll reshoot the film with a longer runtime — which would also allow Paint Drying to overtake Jacques Rivette's Out 1 (with a runtime of 775 minutes) as the longest film ever rated by the BBFC.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)