Cowboys and Indians is an enterprise investment scheme (EIS) that aims to raise up to £3.5m to finance a British comedy drama of the same name.
The company is trying to emulate the success of films about British Asians such as Bend it like Beckham and East is East by producing a film about an amateur football team being sponsored by an Indian restaurant. The producer is Ron Purdie, whose credits include Minder, Death on the Nile and Hamish Macbeth, while the cast includes Gary Mavers from TVs Peak Practice.
Investors will get the standard income tax relief and capital gains tax deferral that comes with EIS investing and early investment also provides them with the chance to appear in the film as extras.
John Adams, director of the company, says the British film industry is dead in terms of financing and that EIS schemes are an alternative way of raising money. He adds that the company needs to raise the full amount to finance a cinema release, but the minimum amount the company needs to start filming in October 2002 is £500,000. However, the minimum amount will be enough only for a TV or video only release.
This EIS could attract investors who have an interest in films but as an investment, the film industry is high risk because of its speculative nature. Even if the film gets off the ground, it may not generate enough revenue for investors to see a return and losing capital is also a possibility.