HC Deb 27 July 1936 vol 315 cc1077-8
62. Brigadier-General SPEARS

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he has now obtained information as to the acquisition of control of the Gaumont-British Company by American interests; and whether he is satisfied that the formation of a holding company, whose shares will be held as to two-thirds by American interests and one-third by British interests, will ensure that the control will remain in British hands?


Full details of this transaction which, I understand, was carried out in the United States are not yet available. Accordingly, I am not at present in a position to confirm or deny the statement in the Press that British control will be maintained.

Brigadier-General SPEARS

Will an endeavour be made to keep this important means of propaganda within the control of the British Parliament?


Will the Minister consider asking his right hon. Friend to refer this matter to the committee which is investigating the amendment of the Cinema Films Act, 1927?

Vice-Admiral TAYLOR

Is it not a fact that American interests are taking definite steps to obtain control of the British film industry?

64. Mr. J. HALL

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he has been notified of the amalgamation of important American and British film distributors; and is he satisfied that this control of British films by an American company will not involve breaches of the Cinematograph Films Act?


I assume that the hon. Member refers to the recent transactions connected with the Gaumont-British Picture Corporation of which notices have appeared in the Press. Pending the receipt of further information, I cannot express an opinion whether these transactions involve any infringement of the Cinematograph Films Act, 1927.


Will the hon. and gallant Gentleman represent to his right hon. Friend that this question should be referred to the committee which is investigating the Cinematograph Films Act, 1927?


Until we have further information it is difficult to make any categorical statement as to what should be done.

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