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Children's Film Foundation

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Last Updated: 02 July 2021

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T he year is 1967. The place is your local ABC Cinema. Event-ABC Minors Children's Matinee, to which thousands of grateful parents Have dispatch their offspring. First off is the ABC Minors song, lyrics of which flash up on screen: to see films we like and shout aloud with glee after this rousing number, Cinema's manager host some obligatory birthday singing and talent shows. Finally, Come moment budding juvenile delinquents are all waiting for: Calamity Cow, shot in glorious black and white, and brought to you by those jolly nice people at Children's Film Foundation. The star of this epic was 16-year-old, pre-cockney Phil Collins, one of many future young stars nurtured by CFF. Other notable graduates of CFF include Michael Crawford, Dennis Waterman, Susan George, Gary Kemp, Keith Chegwin and even Matthew Wright Stuff Wright. Sadly, despite such luminaries-and fact that the BBC was screening CFF as recently as the 1980s-far too many of CFF's works are no more than vague memories for middle-age filmgoers, of well-spoken urchins discovering Bury Treasure on the Isle of Wight. However, CFF, with its encouragement of young talent and regular cinemagoing among children, deserves to be remembered as an integral part of postwar British Cinema, alongside Hammer horror or Carry On. Children's matinees had been shown in British cinemas since the 1920s, but after the Second World War, educationalists raised objections to the nature of films being Screen, leading to the Wheare report into juvenile cinemagoing in 1950. One result was the creation of the X certificate; another was the establishment in 1951 of the Children's Film Foundation, which was funded by so-call Eady Levy, voluntary tax take from all cinema ticket prices. CFF had a total annual production budget of £60 000-incredibly low figure, even allowing for the fact that most CFF films last for less than an hour and were Film in under a fortnight. As CFF was a not-for-profit organisation, ticket prices remained at a very reasonable sixpence until 1971, leaving many children with sufficient money to buy ice cream to either consume or hurl on stage during balloon-making demonstrations, according to choice. CFF's early offerings were nearly all shot in black and white, and followed CFF's official template for clean, healthy, intelligent adventure that would never play for sensationalism or unhealthy excitement or vulgarity. This was a world in which England was under threat from a wave of cockney-accent villainy, prone to various combinations of jewel-thieving, low-grade spying and largely non-violent bank robbery. Fortunately, children of average CFF epics were brave and resourceful; drama would usually conclude with police arriving in black Wolseley as villains flounder in convenient duck pond. Inspectors would then inform children that they were credit to their nation. Jolly Super Time would have been had by all.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

Selected filmography

1 RED-face, BOWLER hat AUTHORITY FIGURE GETTING HIS COMEUPPANCE As far as the Foundation was concern, those in power are seldom up to any good exceptions are police, WHO are always helpful BUT tend to turn up too late. Ronnie Barker in Ghost of Chance 1978, David Lodges, corrupt councillor in Cup Fever 1965 and countless others had their pomposity pricked by spirited youths. Comeuppances generally represented by say AUTHORITY FIGURE slipping into a puddle and falling on HIS arse. 2 STIFF, STARCHY SCHOOLTEACHER WHO JUST DOESNT GET IT As perennial as those dastardly councillors, anyone in gown and elbow patches is grist to Foundations revolutionary manifesto. Many adventures were held up by pesky demands for homework and detention, BUT most impressive of all was Jeff Rawles apoplectic history master Sniffy Kemp, forever putting kybosh on the time-travelling fun of Hitch in Time 1978. 3 BUNGLING HENCHMAN Every criminal mastermind in CFF films somehow felt obliged to employ a clueless sidekick whose stupidity allows kids to foil HIS dastardly schemes and make good by teatime. Roy Kinnear in High Rise Donkey 1980, Bernard Cribbins in Night Ferry 1977 and Bill Maynard in Sky Pirates 1977 are archetypal criminal dunderheads. 4 HEALTHY OUTDOOR ACTIVITY Anti-AUTHORITY they may have been, BUT IT was still odd BOY WHO didnt like sport in the world of CFF. FOOTBALL aside, there was cricket in Eggheads Robot 1970, cart racing in Go, Kart, Go! 1964 WITH Dennis Waterman, skiing in Avalanche 1969, scrambling in, er, Scramble 1969, and athletics in Sammys SUPER T-Shirt 1978, albeit illegally helped by titular tiger print garment. By 1984, kids were allowed to participate in such rebellious activities as forming ska band pop Pirates, as long as they foil some record-copying villains along the way. 5 KINDLY RAG and BONE MAN middle-age may be untrustworthy councillors to MAN, and young men are INEVITABLY hoodlums and petty crooks, BUT old people are, of course, always on side of kids-RAG-AND-BONE men more so than anyone else, for some reason. Wilfrid Brambell, funnily enough, majored in these roles in Salvage Gang 1958 and High Rise Donkey. Sadly, he wasnt on hand for Horse call Jester 1979, in which knee-High Sadie Frost saved tinkers flea-bitten nag from knackers yard. 6 KINDLY BUT INEVITABLY RATHER TATTY FANTASTICAL FRIEND Wonders were performed on microbudgets to bring to life such magical creations as Electro-Nic, ski-wearing electrical educator in Michael Powells BOY WHO turned Yellow in 1972; Battersea-bound Yeti save by William Hartnell in Zoo Robbery 1973; titular giant rabbit in Mr Horatio Knibbles 1971; glitterball 1977, ball-bearing from space, no less; and Kadoyng 1972, environmentally-sound alien WHO save small village from motorway obliteration.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions

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