Film: Hearing Impaired

Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 22nd October 2008.

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Photo of Charles Hendry Charles Hendry Shadow Minister (Energy and Climate Change)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what guidance his Department has issued on the subtitling of films in cinemas for the benefit of people who are deaf including those shown out of school hours for children who are deaf.

Photo of Barbara Follett Barbara Follett Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Culture; Minister for the East of England), Department for Culture, Media & Sport

holding answer 14 October 2008

Although the Government do not publish guidelines on the subtitling of films in cinemas, in February 2007 the UK film industry published its own guidance.

In addition, the UK Film Council (UKFC), the Government's strategic agency for film, has developed and pursued policies to improve access to the cinema for people of all ages with sensory impairments.

For example, it is a requirement that all feature films receiving UKFC lottery funds supply appropriate formats to enable them to be shown in cinemas in accessible formats. The UKFC has supplied digital projection equipment to 240 screens in the UK via the Digital Screen network project, enabling cinemas to show subtitled films.

The first ever UK-wide Film Education Strategy was launched in June this year. Film education—as defined in the strategy—is about making films more accessible to children and young people. The UK Film Council has emphasised the need for the implementation of that strategy to go forward with full regard of the needs of all children, with respect of their accessibility needs.

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