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2017 INTERNATIONAL SHOWCASING THE GLOBAL PRODUCTION INDUSTRY

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With versatile landscapes, experienced film crews and incentivized tax breaks, the only limit to filming in the U.S. Virgin Islands is your imagination. Enjoy up to a 29% tax rebate and up to a 17% transferable tax credit when you film in the USVI. For more opportunities in St.Croix, St. John and St. Thomas, call 340.775.1444 ext. 2243.

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2017

INTERNATIONAL

SHOWCASING THE GLOBAL PRODUCTION INDUSTRY

LOCATION INTERNATIONAL 2017 is published by Boutique Editions Ltd. Additional copies are available on request. EDITOR Julian Newby MANAGING EDITOR Debbie Lincoln CONTRIBUTORS Andy Fry, Marlene Edmunds, Gary Smith, Joanna Stephens PUBLISHER Richard Woolley ART DIRECTOR Christian Zivojinovic www.anoir.fr - Published by Boutique Editions Ltd - 117 Waterloo Road - London SE1 8UL - United Kingdom - T: +44 20 7902 1942 - www.boutiqueeditions.com ADVERTISING SALES Jerry Odlin International Sales Director - jodlin@boutiqueeditions.com Lisa Ray Sales manager (EMEA+Asia) lray@boutiqueeditions.com Nicki Webber Sales manager (North America) nwebber@boutiqueeditions.com The paper used by Boutique Editions is a natural, recyclable product made from wood grown in sustainable forests. The manufacturing process conforms to the environmental regulations of the country of origin. Information in this publication is edited from submissions provided by the individual commissions and organizations. Although reasonable effort has been made in compiling this information, Boutique Editions Ltd assumes no responsibility for accuracy. The publisher assumes no liability for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs and artwork. Copyright ©2017 Boutique Editions Ltd. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part of any text, photograph or illustration without prior permission of Boutique Editions Ltd is strictly prohibited.

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2017

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CONTENTS

LOCATION 2017 INTERNATIONAL

2017

INTERNATIONAL SHOWCASING THE GLOBAL PRODUCTION INDUSTRY

08 FOCUS ON EUROPE

62 FOCUS ON CALIFORNIA

122 FOCUS ON CHINA

29 BYE BYE GERMANY

80 CALIFORNIA IN PICTURES

124 FOCUS ON GEORGIA

Europe's many countries offer a broad range of locations and incentives This post-war comedy makes good use of period locations across the country SHOWCASING THE GLOBAL PRODUCTION INDUSTRY

32 ASHES IN THE SNOW

The Stalin-era film drama is one of the first to use the Lithuanian tax incentive

35 EUROPE IN PICTURES

PUBLISHED BY BOUTIQUE EDITIONS

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SUNSET AT HAMNØY, LOFOTEN ISLANDS, NORWAY Hamnøy is the oldest fishing village in the Lofoten archipelago — considered to be one of the most picturesque villages in the municipality of Moskenes. The Lofoten Islands lie in the Norwegian Sea, far above the Arctic Circle. This area has been used for a number of feature films, recently Downsizing (2017), starring Matt Damon and Kristen Wiig. (Photo, courtesy Alex Conu/Visitnorway.com)

Location International recces some striking locations across Europe

42 FOCUS ON CANADA

A tour of Canadian provinces, profiling a land of opportunity for filmmakers

53 CANADA IN PICTURES

Location International presents some of the diverse locations across Canada

58 DESIGNATED SURVIVOR

Kiefer Sutherland's White House drama is filmed almost entirely in Toronto

New and improved tax incentives have brought production home to California

Location International showcases locations across the Golden State

84 FOCUS ON AUSTRALIA Generous incentives continue to draw filmmakers to Australia

The city of Qingdao offers a way into the Chinese market for international players Production is booming in Georgia, and not just because of the tax breaks

134 GEORGIA IN PICTURES Location International puts the spotlight on locations in Georgia

90 THE WORLD IN PICTURES

138 FOCUS ON SOUTH AFRICA

100 FOCUS ON THE UK

146 FOCUS ON FLORIDA

115 MCMAFIA

152 ADVERTISERS INDEX

Location International visits well-used and untouched locations worldwide

2016 broke production records across all regions and cities in the UK London plays a key role in a new TV drama about global organised crime

South Africa is a year-round destination for international filmmakers This haven for production hosted the 2017 Best Film Oscar-winner

118 UK IN PICTURES Location International reviews some notable locations around the UK

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A PLACE THAT HAS IT ALL The countries that make up Europe offer an astonishing array of locations, from the alien icescapes of the north to the arid deserts of the south. And as Gary Smith discovers, the continent’s natural and cultural diversity is matched by the range and variety of incentives and tax breaks on offer

Julia Stiles stars in Neil Jordan’s Riviera, a series for Sky shot in the hot-spots of the Côte d’Azur on France’s Mediterranean coast

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SINCE the dollar hit a 14-year high in December 2016 — a level that it has more or less maintained ever since — filming outside the US has become considerably more attractive to the country’s producers. That, and the myriad charms and film-friendliness of Paris, are just three of the reasons why major Hollywood action franchise Mission: Impossible is filming its sixth feature film in the city. “The main news for us is that the minimum spend required in France to qualify for the French tax rebate has been lowered to €250,000,” says Film France’s CEO Valérie Lépine-Karnik. “Thanks to a 30% tax rebate that has been in place since the beginning of 2016, France has become a favourite destination for foreign producers and filmmakers, including Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk and Pablo Larraín’s Jackie.” She adds that numerous animation productions, including Illumination Entertainment’s Sing and DreamWork’s Captain Underpants, have been attracted by France’s considerable pool of animation talent, helping to almost triple foreign investment in France in 2016 compared to 2015. In 2016, more than 70% of the €152m spent in France came from US projects and Lépine-Karnik says the 2017 forecast is also looking very good. The lowering of the minimum spend offers foreign producers greater opportunities to work in France on smaller-budget films or

on other kinds of projects, such as VR and digital content. “On top of that, the new tax-rebate threshold will help VFX studios to get the most from French VFX talent, its companies and technology,” Lépine-Karnik adds. “It’s also important to point out that the film commissions around France and in our territories abroad are increasingly proactive through projects such as ‘edutours’, which are offered to directors.” During 2016 director Neil Jordan shot on the France’s Côte d’Azur for the Sky series Riviera. The series was the idea of Jordan’s friend, former U2 manager Paul McGuinness. “I suppose I've been coming here most of my life — first for [Cannes music trade show] MIDEM, because I was in the music business, and then later on the members of U2 all bought houses down here and we used to base the European tours in Nice so everyone could just get home,” he says. “You can get here from anywhere in a couple of hours, so the tour plane would come back to Nice every night — and Nice is a 24-hour airport, which is very unusual.” And this part of the world is also “the perfect place for a thriller”, McGuinness adds. “You can place anyone from anywhere in the world in the south of France, because that is what people throughout the last couple of hundred years have done — as soon as they make any money, they come to the south of France. When people ask me what the show is about, I say ‘It’s rich people in the south of France doing terrible things to each other'. There’s money laundering, art fraud, murder, yachts and Ferraris. It’s the sort of place where you see more expensive automobiles that anywhere else in the world.” "I asked Neil Jordan what his inspiration for Riviera was and he said he 'likes the idea of a sunny place for shady people'," the series' star Julia Stiles says. One of the biggest productions to base itself in France in 2016 was the Bollywood epic Befikre. “In effect, it’s a filmic postcard from France that uses some of the great locations of this country, including parts of Paris and the French Riviera,” Lépine-Karnik says. “They shot for a total of 55 days and their overall spend was somewhere around €8m.” “We are confident that 2017 will be an interesting year and we are currently waiting for confirmation on several big projects,” Lépine-Karnik adds. The Filmadrid office was created by the Madrid region’s culture and tourism office with the goal of supporting its audiovisual industry. This is achieved through co-ordination and practical help for

PAUL MCGUINNESS

“It's the perfect place for a thriller. You can place anyone from anywhere in the world in the south of France”

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The Ring, shot in four different European cities, with Budapest hosting and servicing for a three-week period

any production company choosing the Community of Madrid for its productions. “The region of Madrid does not have a tax-incentive policy, apart from the national incentive that we offer in Spain, which is an expenses rebate of 15% on a minimum spend of €1m in Spain,” says Madrid film commissioner Samuel Castro Hansson. “But we do offer the use of locations managed by the government of the region for free. It’s not a tax incentive, but it makes it easy and cheaper to shoot in Madrid. In order to foster cinematographic and audiovisual activities, the region of Madrid places the spaces it owns or controls at the service of producers and filmmakers in general, the only exception being advertising shoots of a commercial nature.” Both 2016 and the first part of 2017 have seen strong demand for Madrid’s locations. “We hosted 20 theatrical films in 2016, including Fernando Trueba’s La Reina De España and Tom Of Finland, by director Dome Karukoski, the story of gay activist Touko Laaksonen. And Coca-Cola also filmed a global campaign in the metro here,” Castro Hansson says. “So far this year [2017], we have hosted the TV series La Zona, produced by Movistar+ and Tiempos De Guerra, produced by Bambú Producciones, well known for the series Grand Hotel. Tiempos De Guerra is set in the war with Morocco and around 60% of it was filmed here in Madrid. For our first year, we are very happy that all our hard work has paid off and we are looking forward to a very good 2017. We are currently working on hosting two major features, including Ridley Scott’s The Cartel.” The Navarre region introduced a law in 2014 offering a rebate of 35% of eligible expenses when 25% of the tax credit base is spent in the region for films, TV series and documentaries. The same rate also applies to services delivered for film and TV series, based on a minimum of one week spent filming in Navarre. According to Navarra Film Commission co-ordinator Sara Sevilla, the most requested locations are the city of Pamplona, the natural parks of Bardenas

Reales and Urbasa, the castles of Olite and Artajona, the Baztan valley and the caves of Zugarramurdi. She adds: “Last year [2016], we hosted several national film productions, including Abracadabra by Pablo Berger, El Guardián Invisible by Fernando González Molina and Patricia Ferreira’s Thi Mai. International productions include Michael Winterbottom’s The Trip To Spain and Black Butterfly by Brian Goodman. For 2017, we have Terry Gilliam’s The Man Who Killed Don Quixote and Les Frères Sisters, directed by Jacques Audiard.” Previous productions have included The World Is Not Enough (1999) by Michael Apted and Ridley Scott’s The Counselor (2013). The Canary Islands also has its own economic and tax regime, thanks to which the incentives on film productions are 20% higher than the national Spanish rate, and the rebate limit 80% higher than in the rest of the country. “Specifically, the islands offer a range of attractive tax incentives, including a 35% tax rebate for international films using production services from the Canary Islands,” says Natacha Mora Yanes, head of the Canary Islands Administration’s audiovisual department. The 35% deduction is applied to the expenses directly related to the production. There is also a deduction for investment in Spanish productions or co-productions of 40% on €1m and 38% from then on. The incentive is capped at €5.4m and the basic requirements are that at least 50% of the deduction/tax base must correspond to expenses in Spain, that a production has a Canaries film certificate and that the deduction base is made up of the production costs — in other words, the expense of making copies and the publicity and promotional costs are paid by the producer. Both are capped at 40% of the production cost. “And as of January 1, 2017, we are offering a new incentive,” Mora Yanes says. “Companies engaged in audiovisual activities enjoy 0% IGIC [Canaries VAT] on purchases, expenses and ser-

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vices provided by third parties. This means that, when you buy or spend something for your company or you receive a service from a third party, these companies will charge you IGIC at 0% rate.” Business across the islands has been growing steadily in recent years, according to Mora Yanes: “The Canary Islands have seen considerable growth, not only in film production but also in photo shoots, commercials and animation — the latter partly because the Canary Islands are home to the TEIDE-HPC super-computer, which is perfect for animation and special effects.” Alongside the wonderful winter weather with average temperatures of between 19º-23ºC, there are multiple factors that make the Canary Islands popular. “We enjoy more than 4,000 hours of natural light per year and the islands are a continent in miniature,” Mora Yanes says. “That means our locations are surprisingly close to each other. We offer forests, deserts, cosmopolitan cities, beaches, dunes, volcanic landscapes, cliffs, Brazilian favelas, Greece and the Sahara desert, to name a few. Added to that, we have vast experience in working on national and international film productions, with over 60 films produced here over the last few years. Also, each island has its own film commission offering assistance and support before and after shoots.” According to Xabier Ochandiano, councillor for economic development, commerce and employment at Bilbao City Council, the city and region are hugely committed to the creative industries. “Bilbao Bizkaia offers Spanish productions a 30% tax incentive, which reflects the city and region’s institutional commitment to the audiovisual industries, particularly cinematographic works, audiovisual fiction series, animation and documentaries,” he says. “Our main challenge is guaranteeing security, confidence, total support and a warm welcome for all productions interested in filming in Bilbao Bizkaia, and tax deductions are a key factor in attracting shoots. However, it is also necessary to promote the locations themselves, our connections with Europe, the US and Asia, our first-class

MY EUROPE

MICHAEL MOFFETT, FOUNDER OF PRODUCTION SERVICE NETWORK (PSN), SPAIN

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ARCELONA has racked up more commercial film shoot days than any other city in Europe over the past few years, thanks to it having almost everything projects call for under sunny skies in a town with top-drawer shoot support. Projects for Kia, Opel, Rimowa and Lay’s shot by PSN Spain (pictured — starring Lionel Messi) demonstrate the range in and around Barcelona. But the southern European countries get plenty of attention, so I’m always looking for something different. For example, Estonia charms creatives with its relatively unseen locations. Producers repeat because of reliable crew and very competitive rates compared with its northern neighbours. Denmark is beautifully familiar, but features some of the less used landmarks of Northern Europe — and Norway shows winter can be as glorious as other seasons. Eastern Europe remains a strong draw for projects demanding more content for less cost. The Czech Republic, followed by Hungary, remain top for craftsmanship in the region, but budgetconscious producers are increasingly prepared to venture further afield, where solid creative results can be achieved at what are arguably the most cost-effective budgets worldwide. A few examples of shoots serviced locally by PSN partners include Romania for SAS, PSN Bulgaria for McDonald's and PSN Ukraine for Heinz.”

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Recently created alongside the Lower Austrian Film Fund as an infrastructure and our excellent hotel and leisure offering.” additional structural initiative, the Lower Austrian Film CommisIn 2016, the HBO series Game Of Thrones chose Bilbao Bizkaia sion (LAFC) provides comprehensive services covering the as a location for its seventh season, set to premiere in July this year. spectrum of filmmaking. Added to that, Austria offers numerous “Filming specifically took place at two of the most iconic spots on funding packages for co-productions and international productions, the Basque coast — Muriola Beach in the town of Barrika and the available at both the national and regional level. Chapel of San Juan de Gaztelugatxe, which is tucked away on an “The government of Lower Austria provides financing assisislet in the Cantabrian Sea and only connected to the mainland by tance for domestic and international movies if they are shot in an arched stone bridge,” Ochandiano says. He adds that the Lower Austria or produced by Lower Austrian residents,” says LAFC Wachowski sisters also chose Bilbao, specifically the exterior of the (Lower Austrian Film Commission) film commissioner Dietlind Guggenheim Museum, to film scenes from their film, Jupiter Rott. “Funding applies to the development, production and distriAscending (2015). bution of films, both for television and the cinema, as well as TV “It’s clear that international productions now regard Bilbao Bizseries, experimental films, animated films and short films that have kaia as an attractive and competitive filming destination because a personal or subject matter connection to Lower Austria and/or the region’s array of high-quality locations, such as cities, a protectare made in Lower Austria. On top of that, international co-produced historical neighbourhood, kilometres of coastline, cliffs and tions can submit an application for funding via the participating beaches, natural parks, forests and a long list of industrial landAustrian production company. International co-productions open scapes, all with great potential for cinema, television and up more avenues for financing individual projects and securing advertising,” Ochandiano says. “Some the most noteworthy spots access to additional markets, and include the Guggenheim Museum have therefore also become Bilbao, inside which you can CARLOTA GUERRERO increasingly important for the Ausshoot, the Bilbao estuary, which trian film industry.” flows through the very heart of The country’s most in-demand the city, the Teatro Arriaga, a 19thlocations are a mix of historical and century neo-baroque building, the industrial sites. “Due to the diverChapel of San Juan de Gaztelusity of locations, many films have gatxe, the Otxarreta forest, which been made in Lower Austria,” Rott is one of the most important adds. “The historic sites, including beech forests in the world, the castles and palaces of nearly every Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve and era and size, are well known, but the Bizkaia suspension bridge.” Lower Austria also offers a rich palThe latter two locations are UNEette of locations — a wide range of SCO World Heritage Sites. natural landscapes and historical The Catalunya Film Commisreligious buildings, not to mention sion collects information about industrial complexes and modern architecture in both urban and the number of permits/shoots from a little over 200 Catalan towns rural contexts.” and cities. “I can’t yet give the exact figure for 2016, but it’ll be a litFilms produced in Lower Austria in the recent past include The tle over 4,000 productions — probably close to 4,100 — ranging from Counterfeiters (2007), Pillars Of The Earth (2010), The Witch photo shoots to feature films,” says Carlota Guerrero, manager of (2011), Measuring The World (2012), The Paradise Trilogy (2012/3), the Catalunya Film Commission. “The city of Barcelona alone hostGrand Central (2013), Goodnight Mummy (2014), Amour Fou ed 3,127 productions, ranging from photo shoots to feature films, (2014), Superwelt (2015) and A Cure For Wellness (2016) . “They and the rest of the territory has reported around 1,100 film permits, show the diversity of Lower Austria’s film landscape, which offers which I believe will result in about 900 productions.” Alpine regions, forests, lakes and the Danube valley, plus Austria’s Barcelona is the place that hosts by far the most activity, but next most densely populated and industrial area.” is the new business district of L’Hospitalet, followed by the beach The region also offers several high-tech academic facilities that and natural areas in El Prat de Llobregat. “The heritage locations offer futuristic architectural backdrops. “There is a wide variety of in the old towns of Girona and Tarragona and, more generally, natuinfrastructure to meet your art department’s specific requirements ral spaces such as mountains are also popular,” Guerrero adds. — warehouses, industrial sites, studio areas, hotels, offices — includIn terms of incentives, Catalonia follows the national rate of a ing establishments that can be modified as needed. For example, 15% tax rebate for international productions that spend at least €1m recently one popular location has been the nuclear power plant at in eligible expenditure in Spain. “But companies who choose to Zwentendorf, which is the same type as in Fukushima, but has never work with a local co-production partner also benefit from public been put into service,” Rott says. funds for audiovisual production, both from the Spanish [governThanks to hosting the Eurovision Song Contest, Vienna had a ment] and the government of Catalonia through their Catalan record year in 2015, with the film office issuing 50 permits for co-producer. In Catalonia the culture ministry is working on a strarequests generated by the event. And 2016 proved to be even busier, tegic plan for the audiovisual sector to provide new lines of support,” according to Marijana Stoisits, CEO of the Vienna Film CommisGuerrero adds.

“In Catalonia the culture ministry is working on a strategic plan for the audiovisual sector to provide new lines of support ”

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Vahina Giocante as Mata Hari in the Star Media TV series which filmed across Europe

sion. “The inner city is a major draw for productions, with around 24% of all shoots taking place in the inner ring,” she adds. “There are streets that are unspoilt by modernity, with a 17th- or 18th-century look. And over 50% of the city consists of green or water features — we even have vineyards within the city limits.” Alongside a steady stream of work from Austrian state broadcaster ORF, regular visitors include German crews — 70% of all Austrian audiovisual productions are co-produced with Austria’s

MARIJANA STOISITS

“There are streets that are unspoilt by modernity, with a 17th- or 18th-century look. And over 50% of Vienna consists of green or water features — we even have vineyards within the city limits”

near neighbour — and Bollywood TV productions, such as Pardes Mein Hai Mera Dil for Star TV. “We also hosted Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation [2015] for 10 days, which involved closing down several inner-city streets for four nights,” Stoisits says. “And our biggest project last year [2016] was The Hell, a thriller directed by Stefan Ruzowitzky, who won the Best Foreign Film Academy Award for The Counterfeiters [2007]. They were shooting here for four weeks and again needed inner-city roads closing down at night. It’s important to point out that, because we have no studio in Vienna, the local police are very used to shutting down roads, closing off buildings and creating parking spaces for support vehicles.” Seven years after Quantum Of Solace (2008) used the striking Festspielhaus Bregenz opera house on the shores of Austria’s Lake Constance, James Bond returned to the country — and this time to the mountains of Tyrol. The chosen location for one of the great action scenes in Spectre (2014) was Sölden, the largest ski resort in the Ötztal valley — the aim being to match action-packed snow scenes featured in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969), The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), For Your Eyes Only (1981), A View To A Kill (1985) and The World Is Not Enough (1999) — and “Austria seemed to offer everything that we needed to pull it off ”, associate producer Gregg Wilson says. Sölden spans two glaciers, Rettenbach and Tiefenbachferner, and three well-connected mountains, but it took the Spectre team some time to find what turned out to be the perfect location for the ski scenes. The Sölden ski station is dominated by a striking build-

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The luxury IceQ restaurant at the Sölden ski station in Austria's Tyrol

ing, which houses the luxury IceQ restaurant — built at an altitude of 3,048 metres and whose name and appearance are both very Bond. The production team was looking for typical Bond locations — a combination of alpine wilderness and unique architecture, but with easy access for cast and crew. “Tyrol offers many staggering locations of that kind, thanks to the efficient, state-of-the-art infrastructure developed for tourism, which is the economic backbone of our country,” Johannes Koeck, head of Cine Tirol Film Commission says. But even with such a well-developed infrastructure, production designer Martin Joy says mountains are always a challenge. “There are all the difficulties of filming somewhere that is so cut off, coupled with the weather possibilities, the altitude, all those things,” Joy says. “It’s a real challenge to be up here. But the payoff is stunning scenery, and an incredible location.” Another payoff was the incentives on offer. The Tyrolean government was able to offer financial assistance in the form of its production incentive to Spectre, which in combination with the Austrian federal incentive programme FISA, “was essential to realise this huge production in our country”, Koeck says. “And we gave original Tyrol winter caps and bandanas to the entire crew of more than 500 filmmakers to keep them warm during the shoot.” Poland is set to introduce film incentives at some time in 2017. “The draft of the incentive law has recently been debated and should reach parliament soon,” says Tomasz Dąbrowski, head of Film Commission Poland. “It will be a cash-rebate system, with a 25% refund of qualifying Polish expenditure. The planned annual budget of the scheme will be approximately €22m, and we are going to introduce a simple and quick system. There will be no selection committees, no set deadlines for applications and the financial support will be

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granted entirely on a ‘first come, first served’ basis.” The country’s capital, Warsaw, offers a range of classic locations, such as the restored medieval town centre, and the Palace of Culture and Science, a period building from the 1960s. The latter is unmatchable in terms of Soviet-era atmosphere and is regularly used for period dramas from that time. “Further afield, the Centennial Hall in Wroclaw [close to the Polish-German border] is a unique architectural concept from the beginning of 20th century that can be used as the backdrop for big sci-fi film productions,” Dąbrowski adds. “The grounds include a large pond with fountains enclosed by a huge concrete pergola in the form of half an ellipse. Then there are the Bieszczady mountains, which are an unbelievably beautiful and wild, but accessible for productions that need infinite nature and a sense of space.” The German government last month approved a 55% increase in film funding, making €150m available. The cabinet authorised €50m for the German Federal Film Fund (DFFF), as well as an extra €3m for smaller projects. Added to this, a separate DFFF fund aimed specifically at international co-productions and big-budget domestic films has already been increased by €25m this year. The DFFF offers international co-productions a rebate of up to 20% if they spend at least 25% of their budget in Germany. Ricarda Nowak, head of communications, film funding, at the Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, says: “Shoot days in 2016 were around 5,000 in Berlin and Brandenburg for movies, documentaries and TV series. In terms of co-productions that have benefitted from DFFF funds, our European neighbours such as France, Austria and Switzerland, in particular, stand out with a large number co-productions. The DFFF supports the participation of German producers on international co-productions and, consequently, also boosts the revenues from international exploitation.”

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BUDAPEST

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e-mail: zita@flatpackfilms.com www.flatpackfilms.com

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Numerous big-budget international projects, including Monuments Men (2013), Snowden (2014), The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (2015), A Cure For Wellness (2015) and The First Avenger: Civil War (2016) were produced in Germany thanks to the DFFF’s funding offer. Nowak says the largest sum that the DFFF grants — around the €10m mark — has been awarded to several films including The White Ribbon (2009), Inglourious Basterds (2009), Cloud Atlas (2011), The Three Musketeers (2011), The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) and Bridge Of Spies (2015). Several other films, among them Animals United (2010), Head Full Of Honey (2014) and Men & Chicken (2015); and the documentary Almanya: Welcome To Germany (2011), have been granted between €5m-€10m. Hungary has been offering a tax rebate for movies for several years. If a foreign movie production company shoots in Hungary — and spends money there, even if only on video or audio post-production — it receives 25% of the cost back from the Hungarian government indirectly. Productions can request a monthly refund. Subtracting administrative costs, the production can still recoup 23% of its Hungarian spend.

There are two methods for a movie to qualify for financial support: direct state support for local films or co-productions, although in some cases foreign companies can also benefit from this; and indirect state support, which takes the form of a tax rebate for films and related projects. Movies, short movies, documentaries, animated movies and TV productions can qualify for a direct tax rebate if they fulfil certain conditions. The script has to pass a cultural test, the production must fulfil the National Media and Infocommunications Authority’s administration and accounting regulations, and a direct tax rebate has to be requested. The latter is subtracted from the tax of profitable companies registered in Hungary (the Hungarian co-production partner is responsible for all these conditions). Local company Flatpack Films serviced two Bollywood movies in 2016. “The first, Raabta, was shooting for nine weeks from April to June, with Kriti Sanon and Sushant Singh Rajput. It was directed by Dinesh Vijan with Martin Preiss from the Czech Republic, who I found through my network,” says Flatpack producer Zita Kisgergely. “The second film was The Ring, shot in four different European cities, with Budapest hosting and servicing for a three-week period. The reason these movies come to Budapest is very similar to why

SAN SEBASTIAN, A whole world in one city. Its setting surrounded by the sea and mountains, its professionals, and variety of locations make San Sebastian one of the in-cities in Spain. Discover it! www.sansebastianfilmcommission.com

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ZITA KISGERGELY

husband, she lost her kids and due to various circumstances ended up at rock bottom. With strength of will, character and talent she rises up to find herself at the top of the European aristocratic society. Under the pseudonym Mata Hari, she becomes a favourite of the European elite.” The production traveled widely around Europe to get a real flavour of the story. “The first and the third blocks took place in Portugal. The second block was shot in Russia and Ukraine,” Ryashin says. “Lisbon and its vicinity, Porto, Sintra — this is where we shot the European architecture of the late 19th- and early-20th century: parks and palaces, luxurious buildings, picturesque streets, interiors, cars, household items — all this has been preserved, it is there and it is unique. In Russia and Ukraine, we shot the military and battle scenes of the First World War, the life and career of Mata Hari’s Russian lover — the foreign intelligence officer Vladimir Maslov. Large-scale sets of Parisian streets of the early 20th century were built at the Star Media studio. Final dub and sound design were made in Los Angeles.”

“Budapest offers a 25% tax rebate, highly skilled local crews and great locations in a production-friendly city where the food and entertainment is good” people film in Hollywood — a 25% tax rebate, highly skilled local crews and great locations in a production-friendly city where the food and entertainment is good. Both films featured the city’s best in terms of visually stunning neighbourhoods, including the medieval city and some more contemporary areas.” Portugal’s Film and Audiovisual Institute (ICA) is attempting to attract more international film production by offering tax credits. “This incentive puts Portugal in a very competitive position vis a vis other countries that have been capturing the production of major cinematographic works because they offer advantageous financial conditions," says ICA president Filomena Serras Pereira. “Last December, the government approved a law providing foreign producers who work in Portugal with a tax credit of around 25%. It’s deducted from corporate income tax, which is calculated on the expenses of the production equal to or greater than €1m. The programme covers cinematographic works of foreign origin produced with local producers or a local executive producer, as well as international co-productions and national productions.” According to Carlos Sargedas, director of the Arrábida Film Commission, 2016 was a real success, with more than 40 visiting productions. “It was partly down to the promotion work we did at several international festivals, but also to the facilities that we provide to those who film here,” he says. “The Arrábida Film Commission is co-organiser of the Finisterra Arrábida Film Art & Tourism Festival, which brings producers and directors to the region, so they get to know the locations here.” In the past, films including On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), The Boys From Brazil (1978), The Convent (1995) and Invisible Circus (2001) have filmed in Arrábida. “Jeremy Irons has filmed several movies here, including House Of The Spirits (1993),” Sargedas adds. “More recently, TV series such as [Star Media and Red Arrow International’s] Mata Hari have come here, and there’s a constant stream of advertising shoots, especially for car adverts in the mountains and on the Cabo Espichel.” Vlad Ryashin, founder and general producer at Star Media, explained the genesis of the series: “We were looking for a meaningful story of a woman who was ahead of her time and hence changed it. Mata Hari has been a household name for a long time — the most famous female spy in history,” he says. “Her life is cloaked in many myths and speculation. She was betrayed by her

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In the second quarter of 2016, Iceland’s parliament boosted the country’s film-production tax incentive from 20% to 25% marking a new phase for the country’s production industry. The move is designed to make Iceland more competitive on the international market, writes Gary Smith

A NEW SAGA BEGINS

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Sofie Gråbøl and Dennis Quaid in season two of Fortitude

PECIAL legislation has been passed in Iceland that aims to enhance domestic culture and promote the country’s history and nature by supporting motion pictures and television programmes produced in Iceland. The reimbursement from the state treasury is 25% of the costs incurred in the production of films and television content in Iceland. Payments pertaining to employees and contractors are only to be included in production costs if they are verifiably taxable in Iceland. The reimbursement scheme does not cover the production of commercials or music videos. According to producer and director Bui Baldvinsson of Hero Production, naming Iceland’s most popular locations is hard. “Iceland has endless different landscapes with short distances between them,” he says. “But the south coast is the one easiest to access and thus the most popular place to shoot. The area around the village of Vik is currently the most common place to shoot, because it offers so many landscape options. Our favourite locations are the glaciers of Iceland and the glacier lagoon. The contrast and the extreme environment makes you feel so empowered, but also makes you feel tiny in the universe. But the crew of Hero Production really feels at home there. You become energised by being in these locations.” For TV thriller series Fortitude, a commission for Sky Atlantic written by Simon Donald and produced by Fifty Fathoms and Tiger Aspect Productions, Iceland doubled as Norway. The series has enjoyed two successful seasons and at press time signs for a third were promising . The fictitious town of Fortitude is based on Svalbard, the Norwegian archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, a base for Arctic exploration. “I was keen to find a place where I could set a dark, twisted thriller that was unlike any location we’d seen recently — and that took us right up into the Arctic Circle,” Donald says. “I wanted to go into some dark, urgent, real-world

science and all of that ended up being Fortitude.” Having done a considerable amount of research on location in the Arctic — along with Fifty Fathoms’ founder Patrick Spence – Donald decided to look for somewhere that could double for Svalbad but with a less severe climate and “without it feeling noticeably like another country”. They settled on Reyðarfjörður in Iceland and once production was under way, cast and crew commuted between there and the UK, where most of the interiors were shot. Hero Production has just finished shooting an Arla Skyr commercial for the Dutch market. The shoot took place inside a lighthouse in Snæfellsnes, to the east of Iceland. Many things have changed for the better in Iceland over the last few years, according to Leifur Dagfinnsson, producer at production services company Truenorth. “The skill level of production services has improved immensely, plus the choice of hotels and restaurants has grown significantly, especially in and around Reykjavik,” he says. “Consequently, the country is attracting more feature films, mainly from the US and the UK, but also from France, Germany and Denmark. Often they are after the other-worldly look that Iceland is known for but, in the case of Fast & Furious and Justice League, it was in fact more about the snow, which we have all year round, plus the fjords and our classic landscapes.” Truenorth worked on several feature films in 2016 — including Fast & Furious 8 — and has several more productions making enquiries about 2017 and beyond. “We are often asked for the lunar look, and it’s very easy because we have lava and black beaches and quite a lot of unspoiled bleak emptiness very close to our main roads,” Dagfinnsson adds. “When it comes to that look, we are the best in the world. But we can also double for Russia and Siberia, and even much more exotic places like Afghanistan and the Himalayas. Plus we have sand dunes, which we’ve used to double for both Africa and China.”

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E N J OY M U N I C H ’ S C U LT U R E W I T H A F I R S T CLASS VIEW

AND COMBINE IT WITH FIRST CLASS E N T E RTA I N M E N T Since 1841, the privately managed, award-winning Hotel Bayerischer Hof is valued internationally for its elegant atmosphere and the amiable, highly personal service. Here, the highest levels of luxury come as standards with its stylish 340 rooms, including 65 suites, set in the heart of Munich, within walking distance of the renowned museums, art galleries and the Opera, as well as of the finest shopping areas. The hotel offers a choice of five restaurants (Gourmet, Mediterranean, Polynesian, Bavarian and Spa Cuisine), among them the restaurants Atelier (2 Michelin stars) and Garden, restyled by Axel Vervoordt, the famous Belgian interior designer. Guests have a choice of 40 function rooms with a capacity of 10 up to 2.500 persons, six bars and the Night Club with live Jazz. French architect Andrée Putman designed the Blue Spa, the wellness area on four floors, with a panoramic rooftop terrace. You will also find a 38-seat luxury cinema, the astor@Cinema Lounge (Axel Vervoordt, 2011), which can be rented as a screening room. The latest addition is the Palais Hall, a multipurpose function room, which was also designed by Axel Vervoordt. Welcome to the best that Munich lifestyle has to offer.

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MAKING A SCENE BYE BYE GERMANY

Moritz Bleibtreu as David and Tim Seyfi as Fajnbrot in Bye Bye Germany. ©Virginie Saint-Martin

BYE BYE GERMANY Germany does the past very convincingly, as the makers of new post-war, Holocaust-survivor comedy drama, Bye Bye Germany, recently discovered. What’s more, as Stuart Braun learns, Germany can double for yesterday, entirely on location

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HILE period films shot entirely on location are increasingly uncommon, Bye Bye Germany — a drama-comedy following a group of Jewish concentration-camp survivors in bombed-out Frankfurt in 1946 — is one of a growing stable of European and

international productions making use of the rich, and relatively affordable, exterior shooting options in centraleastern Germany. “It’s very rare,” says Bye Bye Germany’s Berlin-based producer, Roshanak Behesht Nedjad, of being able to recreate distant eras entirely on location. “That’s the beauty of these regions — you still have places and corners that look original.”

Premiering at the 2017 Berlin International Film Festival, the GermanLuxembourg co-production with In Good Company Films and Samsa Film, is directed by Sam Garbarski (Irina Palm, 2007) and stars Moritz Bleibtreu (Run Lola Run, 1998). It is backed by the Mitteldeutschen Medienförderung (the Central Germany Media Fund, or MDM) and shot in four towns and cities in the states of Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and

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Thuringia. Half the production was also filmed on location in Luxembourg, as part of the funding agreement with the Film Fund Luxembourg. It’s no coincidence that Nedjad’s partner at In Good Company is Luxembourg producer Jani Thiltges. Bye Bye Germany is In Good Company’s first release. Several more features are in production, including another early post war film that will be shot partly in the MDM region. Bye Bye Germany follows in the steps of numerous international productions — The Reader (2008), Inglourious Basterds (2009), The Last Station (2009), The Monuments Men (2014), Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), Alone In Berlin (2016) — that have utilised locations in the middle Germany region which offers the possibility of recreating diverse cityscapes, from Moscow to Budapest, Rome, Boston and London (see map: A Movie Wonderland), and historical periods in a relatively concentrated area. But unlike most of the above-mentioned films, Bye Bye Germany never resorted to expensive studio locations built from scratch, which is partly how it stuck to its €7.8m budget. “The good thing about the MDM region is that you can shoot a lot of countries there,” says Nedjad of the range and diversity of locations, many of which are also well preserved and historically authentic. As a result, Bye Bye Germany’s producers could easily find streetscapes that could stand in for Shooting Bye Bye Germany on a street in Görlitz

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OLIVER RITTWEGER

“Görlitz is one of the few cities that was not destroyed during World War Two. It has the most compact selection of streets” semi-destroyed Frankfurt in 1946. Nedjad adds that the relatively low cost of obtaining permits in the region and a well-established film-production infrastructure are also a big attraction. “The film teams coming here have learnt that we have a vast range of locations that can stand in for other cities or other regions in the world [or] that can be used for historical and period dramas,” says MDM representative Oliver Rittweger. “The municipalities know how to cope well with film production. We support film crews to get what they want in the end, for example organising shoots in towns such as Weimar that have strong

building heritage protection laws." Nedjad has previously worked across several locations in the region, particularly the cities of Halle and Leipzig and surrounding environs: “It’s very nice for period films because they still have some old castles and a mellow landscape. It looks quite beautiful in spring. And then you have several areas where there is Bauhaus architecture [such as Weimar], Jugendstil and Art Deco. It’s also close to the Czech border, close to Polish border and not that far away from Austria as well. So you have some possibilities.” This diversity is exemplified in the pristine town of Görlitz on the PolishGerman border in Saxony, which provided a Nazi-era backdrop for Inglourious Basterds, and early-century Art Nouveau interiors for Grand Budapest Hotel. Among several locations in the town, Bye Bye Germany made use of a Jugendstil shop front for the department store owned by the protagonist, David Berman. “Görlitz is quite extraordinary because this is one of the few cities that was not destroyed during World War Two, and it has the most compact selection of streets in which you can film for the 17th, 18th, 19th and also 20th centuries,” Rittweger says. “This is something very special. No other town in Germany is so compact. It’s unique.” Indeed, The Guardian newspaper noted in 2015 that, if an Oscar were to be given for ‘best supporting location’, Görlitz would win it. MDM started life in 1998 after regional producers sought to establish a funding instrument that would attract German and European film productions to the region and help develop a local film industry — in addition to supporting a former GDR area that was suffering economic and population decline. But it was in 2004 when Jackie Chan first brought an international crew to shoot Around The World In 80 Days, in and around Görlitz, that the MDM region began to attract much bigger Hollywood and European films. It also helped that the German Federal Film Fund (DFFF) began to encourage overseas productions to shoot in Germany by offering attractive subsidies, Rittweger says. Moreover, as Studio Babelsburg in Brandenberg near Berlin tends to be the service provider and partner for Hollywood productions, for example Inglourious Basterds, it has made sense to scout locations in the bordering

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states of Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia. With MDM’s support, this region has created a highly regarded local film infrastructure, with crews and suppliers ready to assist and lend their local knowledge. Rittweger also says there is less competition than in Berlin or Munich and thus more time to shoot. The location team for Bye Bye Germany scouted little-known towns including Weißenfels in Saxony-Anhalt to shoot the Frankfurt street scenes. Nedjad agrees that shooting in the region’s villages and towns offers a major logistic advantage. “I’d have to say it’s much easier to shoot in smaller towns than it is in big towns,” she says, adding that residents in cities like Berlin, Cologne and Hamburg can become irritated by the procession of film crews shooting throughout the year. With smaller communities, “you don’t disrupt their lives too much”, Nedjad says. “It’s easy to get permits throughout the entire region and the people are friendly towards film crews.” While studio shoots have obvious benefits, especially in terms of avoiding the complications of working among a living community, Nedjad says Bye Bye Germany encountered few such problems. “We didn’t have any disruptions,” she says of blocking streets that were dressed with bricks, stones and dust. “And we didn’t even have an hour of overtime — which is my first time ever on a film.” Though nearly all of Bye Bye Germany’s exterior scenes were shot in Germany, the location for the film’s pivotal establishing shot — in which the main characters emerge from a

ROSHANAK BEHESHT NEDJAD

“We didn’t have any disruptions. And we didn’t even have an hour of overtime — which is my first time ever on a film” displaced-persons camp for Jewish people near Frankfurt — was filmed in Luxembourg on the Belgian border. “We needed this long view where the camera moves up in the beginning of the film,” Nedjad says. “We needed space for the camera to move, and we needed space in order to show the population of the DP camps, because in 1946 they were packed.” Indeed, the DP camp for Jewish survivors, which was run by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA), provided accommodation for 40,00050,000 people. “There were hundreds of thousands of Jewish survivors who were spread over Germany,” she adds. To reflect that, around 500 extras were used for Bye Bye Germany’s opening scene. “We practically took what they had and redecorated it, and the rest was built, including the barracks,” says

Nedjad of creating the camp in the town of Haut-Martelange, which features a slate-industry museum with a number of historical buildings. Meanwhile, the internal scenes, including the US army headquarters where the Holocaust survivor played by Bleibtreu is interrogated by a US officer (Antje Traue) for potential collaboration with the Nazis, were all shot in a bank in Dudelange in southern Luxembourg — 50% plus one day had to be shot in the country as per the funding requirement, although the majority of funds came from Germany. Noting that nearly 50% of Luxembourg’s population of around 550,000 are foreigners, Nedjad says the region is very open to outside film crews: “It’s the most foreigner-friendly country I’ve ever been to. She adds that she enjoyed collaborating with an intimate but well-funded local film industry that can work in French, German and English. For a period film like Bye Bye Germany, the advantages of filming on location were cost and greater authenticity — only the deep perspectives of Frankfurt’s bombedout cityscape were created digitally using green screen, and only in a few of the early scenes. While Rittweger says it is becoming increasingly difficult to find towns in the MDM region that perfectly preserve their former GDR aesthetic, the Bye Bye Germany location team was still able to identify streetscapes that could be quickly adapted to look like 1946 Frankfurt. “It’s a plus for international crews because they can come and find what they want.”

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MAKING A SCENE LITHUANIA

ASHES IN THE SNOW Ashes In The Snow is a poignant story shot in Lithuania, set during the brutal regime of Joseph Stalin. It is one of the first international films to benefit from the newly instituted Lithuanian film incentive. Debbie Lincoln reports

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T WAS a cultural homecoming for me,” says director Marius Markevicius of his film Ashes In The Snow, which shot entirely in Lithuania in 2016. “It’s a history that I’ve been fascinated with.” He speaks of the time when Lithuania was a republic of the Soviet Union in which Stalin enforced mass deportations between the 1940s and 1950s. More than 130,000 people —70% of them women and children — were transported to labour camps and other settlements in remote parts of Russia. “We had family members sent to Siberia, my grandparents left Kaunas [Lithuania’s second-largest city] because they thought they were next on the list,” Markevicius says. Based on best-selling novel Between Shades Of Gray by Rūta Šepetys, Ashes In The Snow follows Lina — played by British actress Bel Powley — a 16-yearold aspiring artist deported to a Siberian labour camp with her mother and brother. She risks her life secretly sending messages to her imprisoned father to let him know she is still alive.

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Through a harrowing winter journey it is Lina's drawings and the strength of the human spirit that keeps her and the other survivors alive. Director Markevicius’ grandparents left Lithuania for America with their children during the Second World War. “I grew up in Santa Monica in the Eighties, but spoke Lithuanian as a first language. That was still in Soviet times so we couldn’t travel to Lithuania. The older generation thought the culture might be wiped out, so they tried to teach us the language, customs and stories,” Markevicius says. “I was always intrigued by the stories. Some family members died out there, some made it back, and I talked a lot to them before I made the movie.” With few survivors left, these first-hand accounts were precious and gave an authenticity to the tone of the film, and importantly the breadth of locations — all of which were found in Lithuania. “I always knew I’d be shooting in Lithuania. In a dream world we would have gone to Siberia [as well] to find locations, but given the political climate we didn’t think it would be a very

friendly environment,” Markevicius says. The team also researched locations in Eastern Europe but in the end Lithuania doubled for Siberia. Lithuania-based producer Žilvinas Naujokas, who runs Taurus Films in Kaunas, says there were skilled location managers on hand locally to help. The majority of the crew was local too. “On our busiest days we had around 400 people on set, including actors, extras and crew,” Naujokas says. Notable in the crew was renowned local cinematographer Ramūnas Greičius. The 42-day shoot began during the winter in February 2016, and continued during May and June. Outdoor locations were needed to double for a settlement of wooden huts in Altai, in southern Siberia, a terrain that includes mountains, tundra, meadows and lakes; and a settlement on the Arctic coastline of the Laptev Sea in Siberia. Both villages had to be dismantled and the environment restored at the end of filming. “Lithuania is a flat country so for the Alpine regions we used some effects in the far distance. But closer, the earth,

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the woods and the rolling fields were ideal,” Markevicius says. Filming for the Arctic location was tricky as the Siberian region is a series of frozen islands and required what the director calls “movie magic” to mimic this terrain. Also the dwellings were actually made from mud and sticks that had been washed ashore as there were no trees or building materials locally. This part of the shoot took place in the beautiful dunes near the resort town of Nida on the west-facing coastline of northern Lithuania. “Where we shot the arrival is protected by UNESCO as there are some fragile sand dunes that meet the sea. We were able to get special permission. The mix of snow and sand is incredible, almost like ice cream, a mixture of brown and white with some grasses growing through, it looked like another planet,” Markevicius says. Despite coming from LA and finding

the cold challenging, Markevicius emphasises the extreme beauty of the location in winter, describing a milelong walk with a Lithuanian crew member where they encountered a magical scene of ice-fishers quietly sitting under a blanket of stars. But there was not enough snow for all scenes. “We had to bring in snowmaking machines, but that was a testament to the crew. When things didn’t go perfectly the team found solutions.” The exterior shots there necessitated a base camp on the frozen Baltic Sea to film some scenes with sled dogs and when Lina forages on the frozen sea. “Having so many exterior shooting days I would say we were very lucky to get all the freezing scenes we needed,” Naujokas says. The crew revisited the location later in the year and had a totally different experience. “We went back in summer for flashback scenes and it was like paradise,”

Markevicius says. For the interior shots the production used Vilnius Film Cluster (Vilniaus Klasteris), the studio complex in the capital. “We built the interiors, a train-car replica and a barge,” Markevicius says. “They have really skilled craftspeople and production designers.” He adds: “A lot of infrastructure in Lithuania is even better than in the US because everything is newer, the studio is very modern and efficient — on a smaller scale — and just 10 minutes from the old town of Vilnius.” Ashes In The Snow is one of the first international films to take advantage of the newly instituted Lithuanian Tax Rebate system. War And Peace, a major BBC television series was an icebreaker, filming in the previous year. “There has been an increasing number of international productions as a direct result of the incentive,” Rolandas

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Kvietkauskas, director of the Lithuanian Film Centre, says. Since the start in 2014, 15 international projects, mostly television, were implemented, including War And Peace. “We are happy to be able to offer a pool of highly skilled technical staff and creative talents. And having highprofile shoots in Lithuania makes it easier to convince other foreign producers,” he adds. “We also promote Lithuania at major film industry events around the world. However, the best promotion is the local industry — motivated, multilingual and skilled people who are passionate about participating in ambitious projects.” “There’s a young generation of crew that are world-class,” Markevicius says. “From getting permits to borrowing a train and tracks from the government — everyone was very supportive. Plus the team was motivated to tell this story, from the crew to the extras. Almost everyone in Lithuania knows someone who was affected by these deportations.” He adds: “We wanted to

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PLAYING A SUPPORTING ROLE LITHUANIA is making itself more attractive to international filmmakers with incentives and a continuing lobby to maintain support. Director of the Lithuanian Film Centre, Rolandas Kvietkauskas says: “The industry depends on state subsidies. Therefore, we have always negotiated to increase funding. But this is not sufficient for sustainable development as it becomes susceptible to changes of cultural policy, so we started considering additional tools.” According to Kvietkauskas it was due to the efforts of producers, directors, service providers and businesses that the incentive scheme was introduced. “Besides lobbying, we also did research on the economic impact of incentives which strengthened our arguments,” Kvietkauskas says. “The Lithuanian film industry is very co-operative — out of all the films we support, about 70% are co-productions with other countries.” Lithuania offers up to 20% of Lithuanian production budget. The scheme comprises a foreign producer, a Lithuanian producer, a local donor providing financial support and the Lithuanian Film Centre that administers the scheme. The Incentive is available to features, TV films, documentaries and animated films. The aggregate maximum amount of the donation funds provided cannot exceed 20% of the production expenses of the film or its part. At least 80% of Lithuanian production costs have to be spent in Lithuania. Film spend in Lithuania has to be at least €43,000.

achieve an epic scope and we were able to do that by maximising the locations, resources and passion.” • Alongside Bel Powley as Lina, the cast includes Lisa Loven Kongsli, Martin Wallstrom, Johan Hauer-King, Sophie Cookson, Peter Franzen and Tom Sweet. The director is Marius Markevicius, the writer is Ben York

Jones, producers are Marius Markevicius, Chris Coen and Zilvinas Naujokas, the composer is Volker Bertelmann, production designer is Jurga Gerdvilaitė and costume designer is Daiva Petrulytė. The international sales agent for the Sorento Productions and Taurus Films release is Radiant Films International.

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LOCATION IN PICTURES EUROPE

LOCATION INTERNATIONAL HAS TEAMED UP WITH FILM AND TOURIST OFFICES, LOCATION SCOUTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS TO BRING YOU IMAGES OF STUNNING LOCATIONS AROUND EUROPE. SOME ARE WELL-USED BY FILM CREWS, OTHERS ARE STILL TO BE MADE FAMOUS ON THE BIG OR SMALL SCREEN

ROQUE BENTAYGA, GRAN CANARIA, SPAIN This image is taken from an area close to the Roque Bentayga, known as Degollada de Becerra. The area owes some of its striking features to an ancient volcano that was once the centre of the island of Gran Canaria. The region provides magnificent views, areas of great contrast, a springtime climate throughout the year and an accessible infrastructure nearby. Projects shot here include a car commercial for the Bentley Bentayga, film The Island Princess (1954) and TV show Frontera Limite (2001). (Photo, courtesy Roque Bentayga, Patronato de Turismo de Gran Canaria)

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CHINCHÓN MEDIEVAL MAIN SQUARE, SPAIN This beautiful square, which dates back to the Middle Ages, is in Chinchón, a town 50 km southeast of Madrid. Its first houses were built in the 15th century and have three floors with 234 wooden balconies called ‘claros’. Over the years the square has hosted numerous activities, from royal festivals and proclamations to bullfights, religious, political and military events. It also served as a film set for the bullfight scene in the 1956 film Around The World In Eighty Days.Other film projects to shoot here include: King Of Kings (1961), Circus World (1964) and Paper Birds (2010). (Photo, courtesy Region of Madrid Filming Promotion Office)

SIEGESSÄULE, TIERGARTEN, BERLIN, GERMANY Berlin's Siegessäule, or Victory Column, is a city monument that has reinvented itself through the ages, from a symbol of Prussian military victory in the 19th century to a favourite tourist spot today. US Presidential candidate Barack Obama chose the Siegessäule as the alternative spot to the Brandenburg Gate for his speech to 200,000 Berliners on July 24, 2008. Movies shot here include: Wings Of Desire (1987) and Emil And The Detectives (2001). (Photo, courtesy BBFC/David Marschalsky)

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SANTORINI, GREECE Santorini is one of the Cyclades islands in the Aegean Sea. It was devastated by a volcanic eruption in the 16th century BC, an event that shaped its rugged landscape. The whitewashed houses of its two principal towns, Fira and Oia, cling to cliffs above an underwater crater, overlooking the sea, small islands to the west and beaches made up of black, red and white lava pebbles. This image shows an example of the unique Greek architecture featuring domes painted in the Greek national colours. Movies shot here include: Summer Lovers (1982), Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001), The Sisterhood Of The Traveling Pants (2005) and Santorini Blue (2013); and numerous commercials. (Photo, courtesy Mark Indig, LMGI)

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ZORROZAURRE, BILBAO, SPAIN A few metres from the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao and the Euskalduna Conference Centre is Zorrozaurre, an artificial peninsula located in the Deusto district of Bilbao which is undergoing renovation under the masterplan of Zaha Hadid Architects. The word SoĂąar (Dream), featured in the image, is an installation from artist SpY, representing the spirit of regeneration in the area. Luxury watch brand TAG Heuer shot a promotional video here in 2017, and music group La Oreja de Van Gogh filmed a video in an old recovered factory. (Photo, courtesy Bilbao Bizkaia Film Commission)

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WINE CELLAR MOUNT FALKENSTEIN, LOWER AUSTRIA. Falkenstein is situated in the Weinviertel, the wine-producing area where one third of Austria’s wines are made. The region is marked by historic Kellergassen — hollow lanes with wine cellars on one or both sides — embedded in placid hills and traditional wine gardens. Lower Austria is famous for its diverse and spectacular locations which include, in close proximity, natural landscapes, historic religious buildings, castles, palaces, industrial complexes and examples of urban and rural modern architecture. Polt (2013), an Austrian TV crime show, was shot in the Weinviertel. The series was so successful that now a tourist-focused Polt Bikeway is a popular attraction. (Photo, courtesy Niederösterreich-Werbung / Michael Liebert)

BARDENAS REALES DE NAVARRA , SPAIN The Bardenas Reales is a semidesert natural region, or badlands, of some 42,000 hectares (100,000 acres) in southeast Navarra. The clay, chalk and sandstone landscape has been eroded by water and wind, creating surprising shapes, canyons, plateaus and isolated hills. Vegetation and settlements are scarce and the many streams that cross the territory stay dry most of the year. Bardenas Reales has been declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO and contains three different Nature Reserves. Projects that have shot here include: The World Is Not Enough (1999), The Monk (2011), Game Of Thrones (2011-), The Counselor (2013) and The Promise (2016). (Photo, courtesy Patxi Uriz (Navarra Film Commission)

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A LAND WORTH PROTECTING The geography of Canada, lying between the Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic oceans, is one of the country’s precious assets, offering a treasure chest of locations and boasting a human history that leaves the imprint of farming, mining, exploring, fishing and the growth of modern cities that welcomed migrants from all over the world. Debbie Lincoln tours the country to review the opportunities for filmmakers

MALIGLUTIT (2016/Kingulliit Productions/Isuma Distribution International) Maliglutit follows an Inuit man on the trail to find his kidnapped wife and daughter, and their kidnappers. Filmed entirely in Nunavut, director Zacharias Kunuk says he wanted it to be “a Western-genre movie made entirely the Inuit way”. The film was produced with the participation of the Canada Media Fund, Nunavut Film Development Corporation, Nunavut Independent Television Network and the Government of Canada Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit Program

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AS WELL as a wealth of locations, Canada has a thriving homegrown film and television industry that reaches out across the world. It also attracts international filmmakers with its well-established film-friendly organisations and a patchwork of incentives. Touring the provinces from the northwest clockwise and ending back at the Pacific coast, we begin with the mountainous and sparsely populated Yukon, home to Canada’s highest peak, as well as glaciers, trails, the Alsek River and alpine lakes in the south. Yukon Media Development is responsible for continuing the province’s film-friendly reputation. TV, movies and documentaries (but not commercials) are eligible for a rebate of up to 25% of Yukon spend and a rebate of up to 25% of wages paid to individuals providing on-set training to Yukon labour — available to productions not accessing the Yukon Spend Rebate. There is also a possible rebate for travel costs to Whitehorse up to C$15,000 — this does include commercials. The Northwest Territories (NWT) reaches into the frozen north and contains two giant lakes and magnificent scenery. Camilla MacEachern, film commissioner for the province says: “One minute, you’re at your hotel in the heart of Yellowknife, then after a five- or 10-minute drive, you’re in the middle of the bush filming an extreme survival scene. NWT is also known for its ice roads and is full of lakes that freeze in the winter. Crews can take over an uninterrupted area to film an arctic, tundra or frozen ocean scene. Great Slave Lake was recently used as a location double for the moon,” MacEachern says. She also highlights the extended magic hours of sunlight — around the summer solstice areas can experience 18-24 hours of light. Incentives are on offer, which can also be considered for commercials. “We provide 25-40% cash rebates for spend on labour, training and travel in the NWT. This includes reimbursing a per-

centage of the airfare that it takes to get crew to Yellowknife from anywhere in the world. We will also advance 80% of the rebate once the contract is signed,” MacEachern says. “In recent years, the majority of [film] activity came from documentary series. In the past year we have seen more locally-made feature films, including The Sun At Midnight (2016), the first ever to be filmed entirely in the NWT.” Other recent projects include: Ice Road Truckers (History Channel), Ice Pilots NWT (History Channel), drama Arctic Air (CBC), and Ice Lake Rebels (Animal Planet). The vast Nunavut region is a mix of land and Arctic Sea that has been home to indigenous people for centuries. The Nunavut Film Development Corporation (NFDC) is the film commission and funding agent for the territory. Aside from facilitating training, mentoring and co-productions, it also offers funding programmes, which includes the Labour Rebate Program. Notable locations include: the traditional community of Arctic Bay in the north-west corner of Baffin Island, with good air and marine links; the modern settlement of Arviat, close to the Manitoba border; Baker Lake, Nunavut’s only inland community, created as a Hudson’s Bay trading post in 1916; and Clyde River on the eastern coast of Baffin Island, known for its preservation of Inuit culture and majestic cliffs and fiords. It is worth noting that there is a significant amount of Inuit-owned land here, with boundaries rarely marked, where filming requires authorisation. Recent productions include Throat Song (2013) and Maliglutit (2016); and documentaries Invisible (2007) and Passage (2008). Newfoundland forms the easternmost tip of Canada, with locations that include: coast-hugging communities with traditional wooden buildings; isolated lighthouses; fishing and rolling farm-

CAMILLA MACEACHERN

“One minute you're at your hotel in the heart of Yellowknife, then after a five- or 10-minute drive you're in the middle of the bush filming an extreme survival scene” land; and a long coast facing dramatic Atlantic waters. Filming is overseen by the Newfoundland & Labrador Film Development Corporation, which applies the province’s Film Tax Credit based on a calculation of eligible labour, limited to the lesser of 25% of the total eligible budget or 40% of the total eligible labour expenditure. At least 25% of the total salaries and wages must be paid in the region to eligible employees.

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COMPETITIVE FINANCIAL INCENTIVES ANNE OF GREEN GABLES

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SHOOT IN ONTARIO “Having worked in Ontario many times over the last twenty-five years, I’m pleased to say that the level of professionalism and courtesy we’ve enjoyed in our productions has been second to none. Most recently, Steven Soderbergh and I completed production in Toronto of our series The Girlfriend Experience for Starz/Lionsgate. Our location needs, doubling Toronto for Chicago, were very demanding but with the help of a great locations staff, and a highly flexible, ‘A’ level crew we were able to realize our vision for the series.” —PHILIP FLEISHMAN, Executive Producer, The Girlfriend Experience

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FEATURE FOCUS ON CANADA

THE EXPANSE (2017/Syfy) The second season of The Expanse, from LA-based Alcon TV and Syfy, shot at Pinewood Toronto Studios. The story is set hundreds of years in the future and follows a police detective in the asteroid belt who, with an officer on an ice freighter and an earth-bound UN representative, discovers an extensive conspiracy

Nova Scotia forms a near-island in the Atlantic Ocean, and therefore also provides extensive coastal locations, as well as modern urban areas and well-maintained historic sites. The area also offers direct flights to Europe and some American regions, as well as experienced local crews and scouts, according to Screen Nova Scotia’s Tara McClair. “Nova Scotia offers competitive funding through the Nova Scotia Film & Television Production Incentive Fund,” she says. “This is based on an all-spend model and payable to producers for eligible Nova Scotia costs.” This new Production Incentive Fund is administered by economic development agency Nova Scotia Business, and enables producers to receive incentives of 25% of eligible costs, up to a maximum of 32% of all spending in Nova Scotia, including labour, goods and services. Recent productions include: TV series Haven (2010-2015), Mr. D (2012-), The Book Of Negroes (2015), The Mist (2017) and Pure (2017); and feature films Relative Happiness (2014), Weirdos (2016) and Werewolf (2016). New Brunswick is a relatively small province that keeps the edge of Nova Scotia attached to the mainland; New Brunswick Film is the agency responsible for its film industry. Though at this time it has no official incentives programme, the province still does offer some support on a case-by-case basis. Recent productions include Still Mine (2012); Copperhead (2013), which used the Kings Landing Historical Settlement in Fredericton; and Owl River Runners (2015). Prince Edward Island sits in the sea between Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, and is perhaps best known as the stunning backdrop to the 1980s’ Anne Of Green Gables TV series. A new version of the classic story is making an appearance in 2017, which also

uses the island as a location. The CBC production with Northwood Entertainment is distributed by Netflix. Another film, from Salt Water Films, A Blessing From The Sea, also shot on the island in 2016, which received funding from Innovation P.E.I., among other agencies. Filming in Quebec, the extensive, largely French-speaking province, comes under the auspices of The Quebec Film and Television Council (QFTC). Not surprisingly this province has a vast range of locations, including water and mountain landscapes, and cities that have doubled as London, Paris, New York, Washington or Boston — as well as playing themselves. The refundable tax credit for film production services

STEPHANIE DAVY

“Ottawa is home to several iconic landmarks, including Parliament Hill and the Rideau Canal, which transforms into the world’s largest skating rink in winter”

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TORONTO LOVES FILM

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WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES (2017/20TH CENTURY FOX) The latest in the Planet Of The Apes franchise, from director Matt Reeves, stars Judy Greer, Woody Harrelson and Andy Serkis. Filmed entirely in British Columbia, the action follows the ape Ceasar (Serkis) who goes on a quest to avenge his comrades after a battle with humans — led by the ruthless Colonel (Harrelson) — leads to massive ape losses

THE SUN AT MIDNIGHT (2016/IndustryWorks Pictures) The Sun At Midnight tells the story of an unexpected friendship between a hunter obsessed with finding a missing caribou herd and a teenage rebel who gets lost while on the run. Written and directed by Kirsten Carthew and starring Devery Jacobs, Duane Howard and Mark Anderako, the film was set and shot entirely in the North West Territories. © Terry Woolf

I AM THE PRETTY THING THAT LIVES IN THE HOUSE (2016/Netflix) Written and directed by Oz Perkins, and starring Ruth Wilson, Paula Pretiss, and Lucy Boynton, I Am The Pretty Thing That Lives In The House was filmed in and around Ottawa. The 19th-century horror story features Wilson as a nurse who takes care of an elderly author in her haunted country home. A warehouse off Innes Road and St-Laurent Boulevard served as a studio for interior shots, while outside locations were filmed in Morrisburg. © Albert Camicioli Photography

includes 20% of all-spend, including qualified labour and the cost of qualified properties and services, with a bonus of 16% for use of labour-based computer-aided special effects and animation. The Minimum Budget Requirement is (total film budget) C$1m; TV series 30 mins or less, C$100,000 per episode; TV series 31 mins and over, C$200,000 per episode. Recent international productions include 2016’s Arrival; X-Men: Apocalypse (2016); John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017); and TV series Quantico (2015-). Ontario comprises Canada’s capital city Ottawa, the cosmopolitan metropolis of Toronto, and offers easy access to the US and coastlines bordering Hudson Bay and the Great Lakes. The Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC) supports the creative economy, providing innovation programmes, tax incentives and services. The region is also home to world-class professional crews and service providers. The suite of tax credits (not available to commercials, music or corporate videos) includes The Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit (35%), the Ontario Production Services Tax Credit (21.5%) and the Ontario Computer Animation & Special Effects Tax Credit (18%). As an example, the Ontario Production Services Tax Credit is a refundable Tax Credit of 21.5% on all eligible expenditures in Ontario.

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THE DESTINATION FACILITY FOR FILM AND TV PRODUCTION IN TORONTO Purpose-built production complex

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ARRIVAL (2016/Filmnation Entertainment) Denis Villeneuve’s sci-fi drama, starring Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner and Forest Whitaker, shot in Montreal and rural Quebec with a largely Canadian crew. A location outside Rimouski, near the mouth of the St Lawrence River (St-Fabien), served as the Montana meadow where the aliens landed their egg-shaped spaceship. The production also used Montreal’s MELS studios

MARY KILLS PEOPLE (2017-/Entertainment One) New TV series Mary Kills People shot in and around Toronto in 2016. The series follows Dr Mary Harris (Caroline Dhavernas), a single mother and emergency doctor who also secretly performs assisted suicides with colleague Des (Richard Short). Mary Kills People is produced by eOne and Cameron Pictures, in association with Corus Entertainment, and with the financial participation of the Canada Media Fund, the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit and the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit

TELL THE WORLD (2015/A Frame Productions/ Adventist Media Network)

FARGO (2017/MGM Television/FX)

Tell The World, directed by Kyle Portbury, is a film set in 19th-century New England that was filmed in the historic centre of Ottawa, Ontario. Set against a backdrop of the social, political and spiritual upheaval of the time, it tells the true story of a diverse group of people whose lives intertwine as they wrestle with biblical prophecies. © Albert Camicioli Photography

For the third season of TV series Fargo the production team shot again in Alberta, basing its operations in Calgary. Loosely based on the 1996 Coen brothers’ film, the series is set in Minnesota. This season stars Ewan McGregor as two feuding twins, Emmit and Ray Stussy, and is produced by MGM Television and FX Productions

The office aims to help filmmakers with a range of services from scouting to post production and has an LA office, which consults with Hollywood’s biggest studios. Ontario has a network of over 35 regional film offices that cover locations from guaranteed snowfall, rolling farmland, suburbia, gritty industrial, small towns, sand dunes, ski hills, historic or modern buildings, to Great Lake coastlines that can double for the ocean. The province reached record-breaking production levels for the past three years and 2017 has maintained that level. In 2017 more than 23 productions are on course, including features Clara and The Parting Glass and TV movie Christmas Inheritance. Television series include: Star Trek Beyond, Suits, Designated Survivor, Salvation, Condor, Schitt’s Creek, Shadowhunters and Orphan Black; and two pilots — Perfect Citizen and The Machine. Another increasingly important draw to Toronto is Pine-

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THE REVENANT

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wood Toronto Studios, a 20-acre site, minutes from downtown Toronto. Attractions include more than 250,000 square feet of production space and extensive backlots, with 12 stages, including North America’s largest purpose-built sound stage. Ottawa, the capital city located on the far east of southern Ontario on the banks of the Ottawa River, has a historic centre and thriving creative industry. Ottawa Film Office co-ordinator Stephanie Davy says: “There are two provincial tax credits in Ontario — the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit (OFTTC) and the Ontario Production Services Tax Credit (OPSTC); most foreign producers will only be eligible for the OPSTC, a refundable tax credit of 21.5% of all eligible labour and other production expenses.” The OFTTC is calculated as 35% of eligible Ontario labour expenditures incurred with respect to an eligible Ontario production. Productions that shoot a majority of location days outside Greater Toronto, including in Ottawa, receive a 10% bonus on top of the 35%. “Ottawa is home to several iconic landmarks, including Parliament Hill and the Rideau Canal, which transforms into the world’s largest skating rink in winter,” Davy says. “The Diefenbunker Museum was built in 1959-1961 as a 100,000 square-foot bunker to house government officials in a nuclear war. There is also the historic ByWard Market with five cobblestone courtyards, reminiscent of Europe and North America. Davy adds that 2016 was a record year for production, upwards of C$100m, including film, TV, commercials and animation. Feature films include: The Blackcoat’s Daughter (2015); I Am The Pretty Thing That Lives In The House (2016); The Monster (2016); and Awakening The Zodiac and First Light, both due for release in 2017. TV series include Michael: Every Day, Motel Monstre VI, Toi & Moi III and Giver. An example of the diversity of locations and services on offer in Ontario is the region around Durham, northeast of Toronto — close enough to benefit from the connections, and surrounded by landscapes including “picturesque bridges, urban streetscapes, quaint downtowns, quarries, museums, abandoned factories and rustic train stations”, according to Eileen Kennedy, economic development officer and film office liaison for the municipality of Durham. The nearby historic Parkwood Estate has featured in X-Men (2000); Chicago (2002); The Tuxedo (2002); and Hollywoodland (2006). In contrast, the Automotive Centre of Excellence (ACE), located at the local university, is a research and testing facility that can help location managers who want to produce multiple shoots of diverse environments in a single day. Moving west, Manitoba, is a province blessed with prairie vistas that include bright yellow canola fields, lavender flax fields, golden wheat fields and sunflowers. Lake Winnipeg and Lake Manitoba, an hour’s drive from the capital of Winnipeg, can double for arctic tundra when frozen in the winter. Added to that are mid-west-style small towns and farmsteads, and the city of Winnipeg itself, at the intersection of the Red and Assiniboine rivers. “The historic Exchange District — one of the largest collections of turn-of-thecentury buildings in North America — has doubled for places like Chicago, New York and Boston,” Manitoba Film & Music’s Ginny Collins says. She adds that Manitoba’s incentives are among the most generous in Canada. Projects, excluding commercials, receive up to 65% with the Cost-of-Salaries Tax Credit, or 30% on all eligible Manitoba

FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES

F

ILMMAKERS in Canada are fortunate to be able to call upon the help of several public bodies charged with supporting the production industry. Telefilm Canada works to finance, develop and promote the home-grown audiovisual industry. “Telefilm has played a key role in the evolution of Canada’s film industry since 1968, of the television industry from 1983 to 2006, and of the new-media industry from 1998 to 2010,” says Melanie Hartley, advisor international relations. “Since 1967, the Corporation has thus funded close to 6,200 productions — 2,247 feature films, 3,611 television series and shows and 315 digital products — for a total investment of C$3.3bn.” Telefilm has administered the funding programmes of the Canada Media Fund since 2006. The Canada Media Fund, which receives financial contributions from the Government of Canada and Canada’s cable, satellite and IPTV distributors, guides Canadian content towards a competitive global environment through fostering innovation, enabling diversity and promoting access to content through industry and privatesector partnerships. Canada’s public film producer and distributor, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) creates social-issue documentaries and films, auteur animation and digital content, providing the world with a Canadian perspective. Initiatives include community filmmaking projects, cross-platform media and programmes for emerging filmmakers. Its online Screening Room, NFB.ca, provides instant access to NFB productions and video-ondemand channels showing Canadian and international independent feature films and documentaries from around the world.

expenditures with the Cost-of-Production Tax Credit. Bonuses include Frequent Filming Bonus that can increase the credit to 55% on the third film shot within a two-year period. The Manitoba Producer Bonus can increase credit to 50% by co-producing with a Manitoba producer. And the Rural and Northern Bonus can increase credit to 50% by shooting at least half of the Manitoba production days at least 35 km from Winnipeg's centre. Collins adds: “We have had a busy year. Series one and two of sci-fi series Channel Zero shot in Manitoba, as well as films A Dog’s Purpose, Trench 11, Incident In A Ghost Land, A Journey To Christmas, Lovesick, The Cult Of Chucky and many others.” Filming in Saskatchewan is overseen by Creative Saskatchewan, which provides a range of financial support initiatives including The Screen-Based Content Development programme that helps

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Vancouver is faced by Vancouver island — home to its own local producers develop projects. As well as being home to numerarray of natural and historic sites, and the first of numerous islands ous versatile rural and urban locations the province also boasts that thread northwards along the Pacific coast. There is also a deep three purpose-built production stages located within a 2,300-acre pool of skilled technicians, talent and production facilities, all lakeside park, with production offices and facilities including within the same time zone as Los Angeles. wardrobe, art department, hair and make-up, VIP dressing rooms “The industry has experienced tremendous growth over the and green rooms. past 12 months with over 300 projects produced in BC, representAlberta has a well-established history of filmmaking, in part due ing over C$2bn,” Bernard says. “The forecast for 2017 is that it will to its spectacular positioning between the Rocky Mountains and equal or exceed last year’s volume.” Recent productions include: plains, offering snowy highlands, arid badlands, rolling farmland 2017’s Power Rangers, War For The Planet Of The Apes and Fifty and lush river valleys. Incentives from Alberta include: the Alberta Shades Darker; and 2018’s Fifty Shades Freed. Vancouver is also Production Grant (APG), an incentive credited against eligible prohome to long-running TV series including Supernatural, Once duction expenses incurred in Alberta; funding of 25-30% Alberta Upon A Time, Arrow, The Flash, Legion and A Series Of Unfortuspend for all productions; a flexible grant equivalent to a labournate Events. based tax credit of 45-55%, with a C$5m per-project cap. Films The Thompson-Nicola region, around its hub of Kamloops, is including Brokeback Mountain (2005), The Assassination Of Jesse about a three-hour drive north-east of Vancouver. Local film comJames By The Coward Robert Ford (2007), Inception (2010), The missioner Victoria Weller identifies some locations that have Bourne Legacy (2012), Interstellar (2014) and The Revenant (2015) attracted filmmakers: “The shot in Alberta, and it has providdesert and arid areas have doued a regular backdrop for TV JULIE BERNARD bled for Afghanistan, Syria, series including Hell On Wheels, Kurdistan, India and Tibet — Heartland and Fargo. and other hot, dry areas for Fargo returned to Calgary to Shooter, The A-Team, Monster film its third season. The city is Trucks, The X Files and Power Canada's fourth-largest filming Rangers.” jurisdiction and hosts an average Added to that is a range of of C$150m-worth of film, televiGold-Rush-era dwellings and sion and digital production each buildings, perfect for cowboyyear — and is responsible for 82% themed filming. An unusual of all production spend in Alberasset is the closed TB sanitarium ta. The city is home to the in Kamloops, a complex of hosCalgary Film Centre, which in pitals and support buildings with 2016 opened a complex that a system of tunnels. Weller adds: includes three purpose-built “Truck and car commercials love sound stages along with workthis region for its lakeside winding roads, grasslands and desert. shops and warehouse space on 8.35 acres. The centre is introducing Locations in this region are seen in 2016’s Ram Truck campaign, training programmes in collaboration with academic institutions, and 2017’s BMW, Mercedes and Jeep campaigns.” unions, guilds and associations. Another area benefitting from regional incentives in BC is A short-hop from Hollywood, the ‘Brollywood’ province of Columbia Shuswap a further hour’s drive east of Thompson-NicoBritish Columbia has long benefited from its west-coast location la. “Our region is outside the Vancouver district and so qualifies — and there are many other attractions for producers. Julie Berfor the maximum labour tax credit of up to 53.5% — one of the nard, manager, production services, at Creative BC says: “British most competitive in the world,” says Columbia Shuswap Film Columbia offers a labour-based tax incentive that provides refundCommission’s Carmen Massey. “Found here is wilderness and agriable tax credits to Canadian or international film and television culture, unique architecture in small-town settings, lakes production corporations that have incurred eligible labour costs surrounded by forest, cabins and country roads, and striking rocky in British Columbia. In addition, the province offers a bonus Digimountains and glaciers.” There is also predictable snowfall, frozen tal Animation, Visual Effects and Post-Production tax credit lakes and waterfalls. — known as DAVE — which is designed to provide an incentive to BC completes an amazing patchwork of available locations companies employing BC-based talent in BC. The incentive proand incentives for filmmakers in Canada. It is a country that seems gramme is not applicable to commercials.” to offer everything you could need to make a film, commercial or Bernard adds that landscapes in BC cover nine climate zones TV series — not forgetting some striking beach locations, includ— from lush rainforests to sun-baked deserts. Cosmopolitan port ing Grand Beach Provincial Park, Manitoba; Long Beach, BC; city Vancouver appointed its first film commissioner in 2016. The Wasaga Beach Provincial Park, Ontario; Lawrencetown Beach Proposition was created by the Vancouver Economic Commission vincial Park, Nova Scotia; Bennett Lake Beach, Yukon; which reports that in 2015 the city issued some 5,000 permits for Havre-Aubert Beach, Quebec; and Singing Sands, Prince Edward 353 productions. Early data for 2016 from the City of Vancouver's Island. film office projects that 2016's numbers will be even higher.

“The industry has experienced tremendous growth over the past 12 months with over 300 projects produced in British Columbia”

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LOCATION IN PICTURES CANADA

LOCATION INTERNATIONAL HAS TEAMED UP WITH FILM AND TOURIST OFFICES, LOCATION SCOUTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS TO BRING YOU IMAGES OF STUNNING LOCATIONS IN CANADA. SOME ARE WELL-USED BY FILM CREWS, OTHERS ARE STILL TO BE MADE FAMOUS ON THE BIG OR SMALL SCREEN

LONG BEACH, PACIFIC RIM NATIONAL PARK RESERVE, BRITISH COLUMBIA Situated on the southwestern coast of Vancouver Island, the unique feature of this location is that the beaches look out to open waters and can therefore double as beaches in the states of California, Oregon or Washington. As it is a National Park there are no homes or buildings built on the shores and so it offers uninterrupted views. Long Beach is a world-class surfing and kayaking destination and famous for its spectacular winter storms. Productions that have filmed in or around the area include: One Week (2008), Elegy (2008), Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009), Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2010), Foreverland (2011) and War For The Planet Of The Apes (2017). (Photo, courtesy Russ Heinl/Destination BC)

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LOCATION IN PICTURES YELLOWKNIFE BAY, NORTHWEST TERRITORIES (NWT) This photo was taken from Yellowknife Bay which is also known as Houseboat Bay, because it is home to a community of off-the-grid inhabitants who live year-round on floating houses. Sun halos or sundogs can be commonly seen in the NWT in the winter months, caused by sunlight refracting through icy cirrus clouds. Yellowknife is the capital city of the NWT on the northern shore of Great Slave Lake, which is the 10th-largest lake in the world, approximately 400 km (250 miles) south of the Arctic Circle. The NWT feature arctic tundra, coastline, mountains, waterfalls and exotic wildlife, as well as urban areas. The province also experiences the midnight sun and the dancing Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights. Traditionally, the majority of productions that have shot here have been non-scripted documentaries or factual series, although over recent years interest has increased from VFX projects, film and TV, including Arctic Air and The Sun At Midnight (2016). (Photo, courtesy Fran Hurcomb www.truenorthphotos.ca)

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CALGARY, ALBERTA Calgary, situated at the confluence of the Bow River and the Elbow River in the south of the province of Alberta, is best known for aweinspiring scenery including the Rocky Mountains, prairies, badlands and a cosmopolitan city of over 1.4 million people. The city was nicknamed ‘Cowtown’ in the past because of its Western cultural history, and later experienced rapid growth due to the oil industry. Now it is a vibrant, modern city with numerous skyscrapers. Feature films shot in this region include: Brokeback Mountain (2005), Inception (2010), The Bourne Legacy (2012), Interstellar (2014) and The Revenant (2015). TV series include: Heartland (2007-), Hell On Wheels (2011-2016) and Fargo (2014-). (Photo, courtesy Calgary Economic Development)

DIEFENBUNKER MUSEUM, OTTAWA Ottawa is home to several wellknown iconic landmarks, including Parliament Hill and the Rideau Canal, which transforms into the world’s largest skating rink in the winter. One of the city’s unique spaces, The Diefenbunker museum — Canada’s Cold War museum — includes a four-storey, 100,000 square foot underground bunker, built between 1959 and 1961. D uring the Cold War it was intended to house over 500 Canadian government officials and military officers in the event of a nuclear war. It served as a Canadian Forces Station until 1994. The site is open for tours and visitors, accommodates events and is available to filmmakers as a location. (Photo, courtesy Ottawa Film Office ) ©Albert Camicioli Photography)

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ROYAL CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC, TORONTO, ONTARIO The four-storey Royal Conservatory of Music was built in 1886. It has decorative stone and brick patterns, chimneys, facades with projecting bays and recessed panels, and inside has hardwood floors, high ceilings, wood paneling and rooftop access. Attached to the Conservatory is a new addition, the Telus Centre for Performance and Learning, which opened in 2009 and features the Koerner Concert Hall which has a N1 acoustic rating, currently the best in North America. The building also includes the Conservatory Theatre, a multipurpose performance and rehearsal hall that seats up to 150 people. Recent projects that have filmed here a number of times include the USA Network TV series Suits (2011-). (Photo, courtesy OMDC – Location Library)

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MAKING A SCENE DESIGNATED SURVIVOR

Kiefer Sutherland as President Tom Kirkman in Designated Survivor

HELLO, MR PRESIDENT Like House Of Cards, Scandal and The West Wing, TV series Designated Survivor is set firmly in Washington DC. And as with those series that went before it, intrigue and betrayal are key elements of the show — as are the Washington backdrops and the numerous familiar rooms inside the White House. Yet to the delight of its star, executive producer Kiefer Sutherland, it was almost all shot in Canada. Julian Newby reports

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OR EVEN the most successful of actors, the role that takes you right to the top can be a curse. Especially if it’s a role you have played across 10 seasons over a period of 14 years. The hit Fox counter-terrorism thriller series 24 was pioneering in many ways. It brought a Hollywood movie star to TV — so many others followed; and it anticipated the binge-viewing that is now the norm for many TV viewers, the urgent, real-time structure of the script leaving the audience desperate for more and finding ways to watch episode after episode either via box-sets or time-shifting. For its star Kiefer Sutherland, who played CTU agent Jack Bauer, 24 did something else that few in his position had experienced before; it enabled him to adopt a role and develop it over months and years, rather than the span of a few weeks offered by a movie. The danger there, of course, is that viewers might forever think of Sutherland in this career-defining role, limiting his choices for the future. But that didn’t happen. “I was always aware of that risk,” Sutherland told Location International. “But after Designated Survivor had been airing for just a few weeks, I was walking through the streets of Toronto and complete strangers were waving at me, calling out ‘Hello Mr President’. It was at that point I knew that I had moved on from Jack Bauer. Not that I regret ever taking that role. It was an amazing experience to be able to get right inside a character like that and develop it over several years.” It remains to be seen whether or not Sutherland will have a similar experience to Martin Sheen who, while in the role of President Bartlet in The West Wing, was approached by Democratic officials and encouraged to run for office in his home state of Ohio — but he’s clearly been accepted as Mr President by TV viewers. In Designated Survivor, Sutherland plays Tom Kirkman, a low-level member of the cabinet who is nominated designated survivor — a member of the President’s staff who is locked away in a safe room during the State of the Union address, in case the rest of the government is blown to bits. It’s an unlikely scenario but at the start of the series that is exactly what happens. And in the

absence of a line of succession (all contenders are now dead) plain Tom Kirkman becomes President Kirkman. As the designated survivor role is a genuine role in Washington, it's surprising that the idea hasn’t spawned a movie or series before now, but as many commentators have observed, the series came quite coincidentally — probably — at a time when in real life the most unlikely of presidents unexpectedly came to occupy the Oval Office. The Oval Office, in the case of Designated Survivor, has been reconstructed at Downsview Park Film Studios, Toronto. Good news for Sutherland, who spent much of his youth in the city, while his mother and twin sister still live there. Speaking a few months into shooting towards the

KIEFER SUTHERLAND

“I was walking through the streets of Toronto and complete strangers were waving at me, calling out ‘Hello Mr President’” end of 2016, he says that he knows the city so well that he could take the subway to work each morning and miss all the traffic. “It’s been great working there. I’m not sure how the cast and crew will take to the extreme winter when it finally arrives though. I’m used to that, but many of them are from LA.” Production designer Cabot McMullen was the man tasked with creating the White House interiors at Downsview Park. McMullen and his team held meetings with the FBI, the secret service and the Washington DC metro Police — and visited the West Wing and the Oval Office — before setting about the business of re-building the White House at the Toronto studios. “I have to say that our build could be the most

accurate representation of the real Oval Office on television right now,” McMullen says. “We were very faithful. In a world where you've got House Of Cards, Scandal and a 24/7 news cycle, these are places that everybody is familiar with and that we see every day on our screens.” But he adds that he didn’t just copy the White House of today. “We went into the White House archives and we pulled out a lot of architectural drawings from past renovations. We looked at photographs, footage, and then we were granted a private tour of the White House. We referenced a lot of past presidents. The drapery in the office was an idea from FDR's administration; all the flags in the room are modeled after Nixon's Oval Office; the colour palette and a lot of the textures came from Reagan. The idea to put a pattern on the wall came from Obama with [interior designer] Michael Smith's stripes, which had never been done in the White House before.” He adds: “And from there you start to add details, things that tell you about the characters that you're not getting from the script. Designing a real historical place vs a made-up, fictional set means there are boundries and rules to respect that otherwise are not a factor in a fictional set. Any significant departures from reality must be motivated by the characters needs and actions and must drive the story forward as well. The designs and choices made should tell you something about the characters and their world that the script can’t tell you with words.” McMullen and his team also interviewed people in Washington DC who held some of the positions written into the story. And conversations with secret-service and law-enforcement agencies served both to validate the production’s existing ideas as well as to provide extra details to give the storyline authenticity. For the exterior shots, initial plans were to shoot in Washington DC, but in the end, Washingtion provided mainly establishing shots, with a number of the city sequences shot in the streets of Toronto. “To tell a fictitious story like this in completely real surroundings is a challenge,” McMullen says. “As the script went through rewrites, less wide establishing shots were needed and we ended up shooting Toronto as the foreground in key frames, with

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Building the Oval Office at Downsview Park Film Studios

CABOT MCMULLEN

controlled views of iconic Washington monuments as VFX background. Much of the walk-and-talk scene in the first act is near [Toronto museum] Campbell House at University and Queen Street. And the post-bombing police barricade memorials and POTUS motorcade route were done in and around Queens Park.” McMullen says that the filming experience was a good one. “Overall the experience in Toronto was superb, some of the best crew I have worked with in my long career on both coasts,” he says. “The local police and officials were very helpful and important to our process." He added that the popularity of Toronto as a film location means that everyone, from local crew to the general public, know what to expect from a

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visiting production — but that sometimes using the studios was a better option to actual locations — with many of the city's available real-life interiors either in use or restricted. "So we built and staged all of our White House interiors on Stages 2 and 3 at Downsview, thanks to my extraordinary Canadian art director Mung Ying Kwun and construction co-ordinator Billy Vance,” he says. McMullen was in New York on the day of the 9/11 attacks and has strong memories of the light in the city after the twin towers had been destroyed. Electricity was down in the area and much of the emergency lighting used came from flares and film-crew lighting systems, creating an eerie atmosphere — a memory he drew upon when

“In a world where you've got House Of Cards, Scandal and a 24/7 news cycle, these are places that everybody is familiar with and that we see every day on our screens” designing the bombed-out Capitol Hill sequence at the start of Designated Survivor. “The night we shot the US Capitol terrorist attack set was amazing for me, because I got to put to my experience from 9/11 in NYC to work in creating that set. Seeing it all come together was a very moving and personal moment of achievement for me.” • Designated Survivor, a primetime series for ABC, is produced by The Mark Gordon Company and created by David Guggenheim.

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GOING FOR GOLD

California’s new and improved tax-credit programme has put the Golden State back at the centre of the global entertainment industry, and so we take a lightning tour to see the affect this has had on the industry there. “We have seen a dramatic increase in work,” California Film Commission’s Amy Lemisch tells Location International George Clooney directs Coen brothers movie Suburbicon in Fullerton, northern Orange County

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Set the Scene in

S AN DIEGO

Courtesy of Port of San Diego

Courtesy of Port of San Diego

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CALIFORNIA’s new five-year incentive programme increases funding from $100m to $330m a year. In year one (2015-2016), the available fund was $230m and is estimated to have generated $1.5bn in direct in-state spending, including $600m in below-the-line wages. ”We are confident those figures will grow again now that the $330m is available,” says California Film Commission (CFC) executive director Amy Lemisch. One of the biggest successes of the new programme is the impact it is having on TV series. This is evident in two ways. First, the increased fund means that fewer projects that apply for support from California are rejected. “Most projects denied funding under our old programme went on to film in jurisdictions where tax credits were available,” Lemisch says. “From 2010 to 2016, we estimate that these runaway projects accounted for around $3.7bn in production spending outside California.” Secondly, the new programme has had a dramatic impact on the number of TV series relocating to California. “During seven years of the old tax-credit programme, four TV series relocated from out of state,” Lemisch says. “But in the first year of the new programme, we saw five series relocate [to California] and then another relocate during the first application cycle of year two. That looks set to continue, with more series coming to California.” One encouraging outcome of the new programme is the range of rival locations from which TV productions are coming, demonstrating that California can compete with anywhere. “American Crime relocated from Texas, Scream Queens and American Horror Story from Louisiana, Veep from Maryland, Secrets And Lies from North Carolina and Mistresses from Vancouver in Canada,” Lemisch says. A recent newcomer is HBO’s Ballers, which arrived from Miami in January 2016. The CFC has created a specific fund for relocating TV series and has carefully monitored the financial impact of these productions to

ensure this ring-fenced approach has paid off. At the time of writing, the $59m worth of tax credits allocated to these series was estimated to have generated $385m of California-based expenditures. For Lemisch, Ballers is a great illustration of the financial impact that the tax-credit programme can have. The next 10-episode run of the show is expected to employ 135 cast members, 209 base crew and 5,700 extras, generating $33.5m in qualified expenditures. In return, it will secure an $8.3m tax credit. “The storyline of Ballers is set in Florida,” Lemisch adds. “So it’s also an opportunity for us to showcase our doubling skills.” According to figures from FilmL.A., the official film office of the Greater Los Angeles Region, Los Angeles’ share of new drama pilots has been on the rise since 2013-2014 and currently stands at 20% of the North American total (2015/2016 season). What’s more, some of the titles piloted during the most recent season have gone to series and look set to establish themselves as ongoing franchises. A case in point is TNT’s crime drama Animal Kingdom, starring Ellen Barkin. Piloted in California, the show went on to spend $33m in the state during season one and has since been re-ordered on the back of rising ratings. Other projects that look promising include NBC’s critically acclaimed family drama This Is Us and FX’s upcoming Snowfall, created by John Singleton and inspired by the crack-cocaine epidemic in Los Angeles in the early 1980s. It is not just pilots shot in Los Angeles that point to a positive future for California’s status as the hub for high-end TV drama. A growing trend towards straight-to-series commissions has also boosted the state’s production levels, with TV drama accounting for 3,316 Los Angeles shooting days in the first nine months of 2016. Shows that went straight to series in the last year have included Westworld, now renewed for season two, and Showtime’s reboot of Twin Peaks. The new series of Twin Peaks finished filming around September 2016 — with around 100 days shot in Los Angeles County at locations including Lancaster and Palmdale — airing on Showtime in

AMY LEMISCH

“In the first year of the new tax programme we saw five series relocate to California” the US and channels around the world in the first half of 2017, and re-uniting David Lynch and fellow series creator Mark Frost. While TV has been the big beneficiary of the incentives programme to date, there are clear signs that the California movie industry is also bouncing back. Movies that recently received tax credits include the comedy Why Him? (2016), starring Bryan Cranston and James Franco, the horror sequel Annabelle: Creation (2017), and TV-to-big-screen California story CHIPS (2017). With the removal of a $75m budget cap (part of the old programme), California is also starting to see more enquiries from

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Sequoia Park in Eureka, California, one of the locations chosen for A Wrinkle In Time. Photo : Anibal Polanco

Veep, relocated from Maryland to California

big-budget movies. In August 2016, for example, Disney committed to base its movie A Wrinkle In Time in California, in return for an $18m credit. Overall, the film is expected to bring $85m in qualified spending to California. Of this, $44m will be below-the-line wages. Walt Disney Picture’s 2018 release A Wrinkle In Time is important to California for a number of reasons. Chicago-born, California was Walt Disney’s chosen state for both his home and his iconic Burbank studios. Like Saving Mr. Banks (2013) before it, a Disney film shot on location in California is always an event. But most of the headlines have been about the film’s director, Ava DuVernay, whose first full-length film was 2008’s hip-hop documentary, This Is The Life. DuVernay’s name was assured a place in cinema history after 2014’s Selma was nominated for a Best Picture Academy Award, the first film directed by a black woman to achieve this accolade. And A Wrinkle In Time marks another milestone, as the first movie with a budget of $100m-plus to be directed by an African-American.

“Something very special and uncommon about this project is the diverse crew that we have working on it,” says Alison Taylor, supervising location manager on A Wrinkle In Time. “I've been working in locations for over 20 years and have never been in an office and on a set with so many women and people of colour. As an African-American woman myself, I am thrilled to see people that look like me on the job every day. But it’s not just me. Many of the crew members have mentioned how nice it is to come to work and have the environment look like the city of Los Angeles — multi-cultural. It is also nice to hear laughter all the time. While our director, Ava DuVernay, should be credited with the level of inclusiveness that we are experiencing on the project, she shares the credit with our producer, Jim Whitaker, and executive producer Doug Merrifield for keeping the air in the room light. Even though the film isn't easy and we are all working hard, those three always manage to find a way to share a good laugh with those around them.” Filming was mid-way through at press time and already the production had shot in the Los Angeles area — including West Adams and Downtown — Venice Beach, San Pedro, Santa Clarita and Humboldt County. There were further plans to shoot in Simi Valley — in Southern Ventura and bordering the San Fernando Valley — and Acton, in Los Angeles County. A Wrinkle In Time would also travel around the world to New Zealand. The $100m-plus budget film will bring some $85m of accredited spend to the state, and is receiving $18m in tax incentives. And the wider consequences of this are good going forward, according to Mike Delorenzo, president of Santa Clarita Studios, which hosted part of A Wrinkle In Time. “We had the film here for an 80-day schedule. It’s more than a decade since we’ve seen a movie with a budget north of $100m in the state and I’ve no doubt we’ll see more,” he says. “We’ve had another Disney movie, Magic Camp, [2018, starring Jeffrey

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Tambor and Adam Devine] with us, so it's a really busy time.” For Delorenzo, the beauty of the incentive programme is not just the impact it is having on production-based employment, but also on ancillary activities: “There were 350 employees, including construction, working on A Wrinkle In Time, and another five that we have taken on at the studios. But in addition there are all the dry cleaners and car-repair shops and caterers that are benefiting. Think of the number of lunches a production like A Wrinkle In Time brings into the city of Santa Clarita.” The incentive is also underpinning the Studio’s expansion plans: “We have 16 stages at the moment but we are adding a total of 25,000 square feet to the studio complex,” Delorenzo says, of which 6,000 square feet will be a green screen/motion capture studio with a leading partner in the field. “VR and gaming are both big growth industries, so we need to adapt for that.” Dylan Lewis, owner of Santa Clarita-based Blue Cloud Movie Ranch, is another who has seen the impact of the incentives at first hand. “It's a good time to be in this business in California,” he says: “The tax credit has created a lot of excitement among stage owners and ranch owners. We’re seeing a lot of production permits being

granted for TV and indie films.” Lewis has taken advantage of the upbeat mood in California by making a series of new investments. Among the feature films to have been based at Blue Cloud Movie Ranch are American Sniper (2014) and Man Down (2015), while TV series have included Scorpion, NCIS: Los Angeles, The Last Ship, Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders, State Of Affairs, Westworld and Shooter. “TV is a great business for us, particularly if a series returns, because it runs like clockwork,” Lewis says, adding: “We’ve also hosted commercials, reality series and The Almost Impossible Gameshow.” According to Lewis, the ranch is pretty much a year-round business these days: “The rise of Netflix, Amazon and the kind of limited series you see on cable means you don't see the summer and winter breaks that used to characterise the television business.” California — and of course its movie capital LA — is also enjoying seeing the big names coming back home to work. Suburbicon is the next movie from George Clooney as director, the Coen brothers as writer-producers and Matt Damon, Julianne Moore and Woody Harrelson as its stars — and the shoot for this quirky thriller took place entirely in the Golden State.

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but waited until the shoot had finished. “In Edward Scissorhands we Suburbicon is set in a quiet suburban town in Fifties America, and found an attractive 50-home street in Florida and painted all 50 the initial challenge was to find such a location as close to the centre homes, cut down all the trees, and brought in all these period cars,” of LA as possible. There are shining examples of this evocative period Burmeister says. “This was on a smaller scale. We didn’t need so many of affluence and change in movies past: Edward Scissorhands’ line of homes. Nowadays, with computer generation and other aspects, you cookie-cutter, single-storey homes was found in Florida; the Fifties can get the same effect with fewer homes.” perfection of Hill Valley in Back To The Future, on the other hand, The street was perfect in so many ways, but in the movie the was principally a set created at Universal Studios in Los Angeles. Lodge family home was a two-stoSuburbicon location manager rey property and the Fullerton Michael Burmeister had worked on MICHAEL BURMEISTER street was all single-storey homes. the 1990 Johnny Depp-starrer as So for the Lodge’s house the prowell as two episodes of Robert duction needed to move to the city Zemeckis’ Eighties time-travel trilof Carson, in Los Angeles County. ogy, so knew all about the problem Most of the interiors meanwhile associated with recreating this phowere shot on sound stages in togenic period of modern America: Burbank. we all know what it looks like, but And the backyards were shot in where do you find it? Santa Clarita. Why? “Well, there’s In Suburbicon, young boy a huge hunk of land there called Nicky Lodge’s perfect world crashes Mystery Mesa. It’s on the top of a after his mother is killed and it hill — a flat mesa surrounded by cliffs, and there’s one way in and one seems his father might have been involved. Nicky tries to make sense way out,” Burmeister says. “But it’s a massive piece of property and of the behaviour of the adults around him as the family is caught in a they mainly use it for movies. There’s nothing on it, it’s mainly mesa web of betrayal, adultery and blackmail. Then racism rears its ugly — for use if you want to shoot a prairie scene or dirt road. We went head as the Meyers — the neighbourhood’s first black family — moves out there because the nice thing about it is, it’s kinda high from the into the house next door. surrounding areas. So we built these backyards and in a lot of the camSo the American dream has gone bad. But Suburbicon still needed era angles you were just looking at blue sky because you’re so far up.” neat homes, peaceful streets, clipped lawns as well as tidy driveways The effect was to add to the movie’s dreamy, untouched Fifties and garages for the all-important shiny family automobile. Location look. “It was idyllic,” Burmeister says. “And you didn’t have to greenmanager Burmeister and his team settled on four principal screen anything in. When they were in the backyards all you saw was locations. blue sky. So its a nice matching piece between Fullerton and “I did some of the scouting and [location scout] Ken Haber did a Carson.” lot more for me and he was able to find two areas where the homes Surprisingly, though close to America’s movie capital of Los Angewere built in the Fifties — period-correct with not a lot of improveles, the streets used in Fullerton and Carson had little experience with ments done to them. Meaning they didn't have modern features production crews — but the locals were hospitable throughout. added. They were close to how they were when they were built and “They were all fully on board with the filming,” Burmeister says. we found enough homes to make it work.” “Once we gained their trust they were bringing out cookies and tamaThe chosen street is in Fullerton, northern Orange County and les and George was taking photographs with people in the happened to have no trees at the time, which made it just right for the neighbourhood — it was a really nice, fun experience for the filmmovie. The city authorities were about to plant along the roadside

“I told him our director was George Clooney, and he says ‘I don’t care about Hollywood!’”

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Good Girls Revolt is set in New York but was based at a sound stage in Santa Clarita, with external shots in downtown Los Angeles

makers and the neighbours. In fact when we left, some of the neighbours called me and said ‘We kinda miss you guys!’" One older resident of Fullerton was more sceptical, however, claiming when approached by Burmeister at the start of shooting, that he wasn’t interested in the movie business. “This old timer was cutting his lawn and I go talk to him and he's not listening to my story at all,” Burmeister says. “I tried to explain the whole movie, and I told him our director was George Clooney, and he says “I don't care about Hollywood!’ While I'm talking to him George walks over introduces himself and they became, like, buddies — and this guy became our advocate. He was living next door to our main house and he was the curmudgeon of the block. But then he became one of our staunch allies. It was that personal touch that George has — and it is genuine. He’s always taking photographs with people, shaking hands and signing things — it’s real, but it’s also such good public relations and that was in large part why we were so successful on this shoot.” A shoot which took place entirely in California — good news for Burmeister and other crew members as well as for the state’s film industry. “The filmmakers all kind of live here, so there was a desire to stay here,” Burmeister says. “Also they were able to obtain a tax credit from the California Film Commission, which has helped to spearhead this drive to create incentives to keep filmmakers here. And this particular budget was a modest budget so the incentives became really important. And, of course, there is an infrastructure in Southern California for filmmaking so that all fell into place. Then it was incumbent upon me and the people I work with to make it work.” It’s no surprise that Los Angeles is where a significant proportion of California’s total filming activity takes place. But what is less well known is the city’s chameleon-like ability to be ‘somewhere else’. “Good Girls Revolt, set in New York, was based at a sound stage in

Santa Clarita, but the outdoors shots were done in downtown Los Angeles,” Amy Lemisch says. “Doubling for New York in Los Angeles’ downtown area happens a lot. We also had CSI: New York shooting there. And Ballers, the American football series featuring The Rock, is set in Miami, but it also filmed in Los Angeles.” “California can also do period very well,” says FLICS (Film Liaisons in California Statewide) president Cassandra Hesseltine. “The Ben Affleck film Argo [2012] used parts of Los Angeles to re-create the Seventies, and the Beverly Hills Hilton and parts of Crescent City are very Sixties-looking. There’s also a bluff in Crescent City that doubles for the East Coast, and up in Humboldt we’ve doubled Ireland and Scotland. In the rainforest up there, we’ve also doubled Northern Europe. And then there’s the light. Mexican director Juan Andrés Bueno [Amorous Pancho Villa, 2013] is filming his latest feature here because he loves the California light.” NBC’s critically acclaimed family drama This Is Us is set in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — but shot in Los Angeles. “When I scout for different city looks here in Los Angeles I look for angles and views that we can build on to create a world that has a feeling of the city we are trying to represent,” location manager Duffy Taylor says. “The areas we have filmed that have doubled for Pittsburgh are San Pedro, South Pasadena, Long Beach and some areas of downtown Los Angeles. I would say it's easier to find Pittsburgh in Los Angles than Los Angeles in Pittsburgh.” Filmmakers first came to California for the weather, but since DW Griffith arrived here back in 1910, a comprehensive services industry has grown to provide everything else that a filmmaker could possibly need. Integral to this offer are the studios and film ranches that offer an infinite variety of backdrops for every type of production. A cluster of major studio facilities exists in, and close to, Los Angeles. In any one of these a filmmaker can take a project from the

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entertainment, tech and media. This very well may be the beginning development of an idea, through rehearsal and filming to post proof a new golden age for Hollywood, and certainly for Sunset Bronson duction, including everything from catering to wardrobe and Studios.” Humphrey is confident that this momentum will continue. make-up. Filming can take place on a range of small-to-vast sound “Now more than ever, leading content producers and TV networks stages and a variety of backlots. want to be in Hollywood to be near creative talent, world-class studios “We have 35 sound stages and 14 exterior sets spread out across and the entire entertainment ecosystem.” our main lot and our nearby ranch facility, enabling us to accommoNetflix CCO Ted Sarandos has announced that he intends to date just about any production imaginable,” Los Angeles-based house as much production as possible in California. Instead of investWarner Bros. Studios’ Jessica Zacholl says. “It’s not unusual to see a ing in tax incentives around the US he has decided to invest in snowy cityscape right next to a Midwestern summertime party set, infrastructure, and as the production industry's natural home his choany time of the year.” sen state is California. Everybody knows the contribution that the Warner Bros. Studios Northeast of Los Angeles, in Simi Valley, Big Sky Movie Ranch has made to the movie industry, but the facility is at also the heart of covers more than 6,500 acres of rolling hills and valleys. Owned by J the vibrant television industry. “Business is increasing, and we’re Paul Getty from the Thirties until the early Eighties, the Ranch’s filmactively adapting to the shorter orders and formats becoming more ing credentials are well established. It was used for Western TV series prevalent in the television world. For example, we’ve been working a Gunsmoke and Rawhide in the Fifties, and for Bonanza in the late lot with Netflix recently, with [family sitcom] Fuller House and [comSixties. It is particularly well known for the exterior shots of The Litedy series] The Ranch filming on our lot,” Zacholl says. tle House On The Prairie, culminating in the final television movie The much-vaunted golden age of television, and the influence of in the franchise, The Last Farewell [1984]. OTT services including Netflix and Amazon, has brought growth to More recently Big Sky replicated the beautiful Australian outback Sunset Bronson and Sunset Gower Studios, a Los Angeles facility owned location that was the childhood home of PL Travers, author of Mary by Hudson Pacific Properties — a publicly traded Real Estate InvestPoppins, in Disney’s Saving Mr. ment Trust (REIT) that owns and Banks (2013). Disney had originally operates office and media and enterVICTOR COLEMAN planned to film in Australia but tainment assets throughout the found everything that was needed West Coast. These two studios are to recreate Australia at Big Sky on a modernisation curve. Hudson Ranch. Pacific Properties acquired Sunset Jeff Morris, from Scout VentuGower Studios in 2007 and Sunset ra, a Ventura City-based company Bronson Studios in 2008. Sunset that puts location scouts, independGower Studios currently houses 12 ent producers and event planners sound stages and Technicolor’s in touch with local property ownNorth American headquarters, ers, reports that recently crews which Hudson Pacific Properties shooting for features The Revenant built in 2008. Sunset Bronson Stu(2015), Hail, Caesar! (2016), Annadios comprises 10 sound stages, and belle: Creation (2017) and TV series Westworld (2016-) have used Big has served as the headquarters for KTLA, one of Los Angeles’ largest Sky, as well as various commercials and short-film producers. independent television stations, for nearly 60 years. Home to the wildly Tejon Ranch — the largest private ranch in California — is a vast successful syndicated reality show Judge Judy for over 20 years, the property 60 miles north of Los Angeles that covers 240 square miles Studios recently completed a long-term, multi-stage deal with Netflix of diverse locations that include rolling hills, mountain vistas, varifor the provision of stages and services for multiple productions. ous tree areas, paved roads, streams, wide-open spaces with no “Sunset Bronson Studios is in the final stages of a multi-million visible power lines, two auto pads, cattle and horses and white ranch dollar building project, adding two state-of-the art creative office fencing. buildings, ICON and CUE. ICON will become the new Southern CaliMeanwhile, the opening of a new studio complex on Mare Island fornia headquarters for Netflix,” says CEO, Hudson Pacific Properties, promises to transform the local film and TV industry in the San FranVictor Coleman. “Landscaping and the creative atmosphere at both cisco Bay Area. Studio start-up expert Mark Walter was called in by studios is also being significantly upgraded and enhanced. equipment rental firm Cinelease to explore the potential of a buildColeman credits the California tax incentives as an important aid ing a state of the art Bay Area studio complex and is now in the midst to bolstering demand, emphasising that the company’s facilities are of doing so: “We looked at a number of possibilities but came to the attractive to “a wide and growing range of content producers” includconclusion that Mare Island, the site of a former Naval Base, was pering streaming companies such as Netflix as well as branded cable fect for production. It’s conveniently located and has the space you networks — for instance HBO — and major networks including ABC, need for all of the support services that go with production.” CBS and Fox. “Netflix’s decision to come to Hollywood and occupy San Francisco has been a vibrant film and TV hub for decades. over 400,000 square feet at ICON and Sunset Bronson Studios sigRecently it has hosted a number if TV productions, including Silicon nals a new chapter in Hollywood’s magical history,” Hudson Pacific Valley, Sense8, Chance and When We Rise. In addition to the CaliforMedia general manager Bill Humphrey says. “Their arrival confirms nia-wide incentive, it offers its own Scene In San Francisco Rebate the momentum of ‘the new Hollywood’, which is now the nexus of

“Netflix's decision to come to Hollywood signals a new chapter in Hollywood's magical history”

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Dan Lauria, Mark Paul Gosselaar and Kylie Bunbury in TV series Pitch, at Petco Park, home to MLB’s San Diego Padres

Program. At the time of writing, the rebate was worth up to $600,000 per film/documentary or per episode of a TV episode/pilot/web series. In order to qualify, productions with budgets under $3m need to shoot 55% of their days in San Francisco; with budgets of over $3m, productions need to shoot 65% of their days in the city. This attractive programme was enough to encourage the acclaimed Steve Jobs (2015) film to locate to the city. Production is coming back to all parts of the Golden State. Down south, San Diego has hired a new filming programme manager and is looking at the feasibility of re-opening its film office, which was closed in 2013. Speaking to The San Diego Union-Tribune, the new manager, Brandy Shimabukuro, said: "We have crews to support a robust filming industry, but that hasn’t been stated in a proactive way.” Although it is early days, Shimabukuro also suggested that San Diego might consider additional local incentives in the future. Fox’s well-received drama Pitch, which tells the fictional story of Major League Baseball’s (MLB) first female player — Ginny Baker played by Kylie Bunbury — is based in San Diego and shoots in numerous areas of the city including the Petco Park stadium, home to the MLB’s San Diego Padres. The show, created by Dan Fogelman, was a real coup for San Diego because it required the support of the MLB. Protective of its trademarks and brand image, the MLB agreed to back the show on the understanding that it stayed away from controversial topics such as gambling, domestic violence and performance-enhancing drugs. The result is one of the most authentic dramas about US professional sport ever made, with a real stadium, a real team and the kind of trueto-life stadium camera angles, press-conference sequences and behind-the-scenes locker-room footage that make sports content so distinctive and compelling. “The only thing that is different is that there is a woman on the mound,” Fogelman says.

“Pitch was written about San Diego specifically and our baseball team and gorgeous stadium,” says Pitch location manager Lisa S Rothmuller. “The biggest challenge was fitting the shoot in between all of the other events at the stadium, most of all baseball. We filmed the pilot prior to the season and then filmed the series in the few breaks that the team had at the stadium. It was a challenge to keep the field looking great for baseball with a 65-person crew stampeding it on every shoot, but it was workable.” No talk about filming in California is complete without mention of La La Land. A six-Oscar winner and very nearly 2017’s Best Picture, the film shows Los Angeles as the city of dreams it truly is to anyone who aspires to any part of the movie business. But it is the opening of this movie that encapsulates the can-do attitude of the people working in the state’s movie industry. The inspiration for the film — and specifically for the film’s much-celebrated opening sequence — came when writer-director Damien Chazelle, like anyone and everyone who has experienced life in LA, found himself in his car, in a jam, on the freeway, unable to move. Something that can happen to anyone, at any time of the day in that city. “In LA you mostly have cars with one or two people in them. It's part of what makes the city feel a bit lonely,” Chazelle says. “But it also reflects how LA is a crazy haven for dreamers. Because when you're in your car, what are you doing? You're playing music, or you dream. Each dreamer has their own dream, each person is living their own song. You're in your own bubble-universe, your own living musical. So that is why that moment is the perfect one for two dreamers like Sebastian and Mia to meet. We use the car radios to create a tapestry of music that everyone, one by one, on this freeway joins in to at the moment.” Shot at the interchange of the 110 and 105 freeways overlooking Downtown, the scene seemingly runs without a single cut as drivers jump out of their cars and join in a choreographed extravaganza

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David Wasco: “It’s pretty unusual to do a Busby Berkeley-type dance number on an LA freeway”

set to the original song Another Day Of Sun, by composer Justin Hurwitz and lyricists Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. Actually shot in three takes stitched together, most of the sequence was filmed with a camera on a crane and a steadicam for the final shot, the operator running between cars — in Chazelle’s words, to get “a little more flexibility and precision in terms of getting close to the dancers”. “Everything had to work as perfectly as possible once the cameras were rolling, because any misstep would be basically unacceptable,” actor Ryan Gosling says. “So we practiced for three months beforehand so that we could deliver for Damien what he was looking for in one take.” “It’s pretty unusual to do a Busby Berkeley-type dance number on an LA freeway,” says production designer David Wasco. “So what we did was create a space in our studio parking lot filled with faux highway dividers and cars for Damien, Mandy and the cast to rehearse. And then we had a very brief window of time when the California Highway Patrol shut down the freeway and we shot this very, very complicated dance number. Somehow it all came together like magic.” Location manager on the movie, Robert Foulkes, was charged with finding the right stretch of freeway for this piece of magic. And he was the right man for the job, having been set a similar task just a year previously while working on the Jennifer Anniston-starrer Cake. “Damien’s script specified the 101 Freeway which, to me, implied seeing Downtown in the background — or Hollywood buildings, in that Mia’s apartment was ‘set in Hollywood’,” he says. “But, knowing that closing down and controlling the 101 for even a minuscule length of time would be impossible, I gathered information and photos on all of the usual shootable suspects — freeways, and freeway look-alikes — to present to Damien. But early on it was clear that the favourite

would become the FasTrak ramp of the 105 at the 110,” he says. “The expanse of city and sky seen from up there can’t be beat. It’s the perfect way to dive into all things La La Land.” Foulkes had used the very same stretch of freeway ramp for Cake. “We were up there shooting for a much smaller amount of time — that scene involved, essentially, just one car and two actors — but it went very smoothly and looked fantastic, very dramatic in its vantage points from above and from below. With La La Land, though, we knew that in order for such an ambitious scene to work, to have enough time to prep, shoot and strike the location, we would need to convince Caltrans [California Department of Transportation] and Metro representatives to allow for a two-day closure for shooting, and a one-day closure for rehearsal. In order to be ready to go each morning at sunrise, several hours would be needed beforehand just to get all of our equipment and support vehicles, picture cars, cast and so on, up onto the ramp and in place. So essentially we were asking for a full 48-hour period — Friday night through Sunday night — to then get everything and everybody safely off the ramps in order for the lanes to re-open by rush hour Monday morning.” He adds: “It took a few meetings, but ultimately all the groups involved — including dozens of California Highway Patrol officers — were extremely helpful in understanding what it would take to make such a special scene happen.” And Foulkes, the dancers and other crew members got a feel of what moviegoers would eventually see, on a monitor, a matter of minutes after the scene wrapped. “Watching a couple hundred cast and crew members burst into applause as they watched a perfect take played back on the monitor, realising ‘Wow, tens of thousands of Angelenos and out-of-towners are whizzing below us in their cars who have no idea there’s Hollywood history happening high above them!’. That was one of the great moments working on La La Land.”

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LOCATION INTERNATIONAL HAS TEAMED UP WITH FILM AND TOURIST OFFICES, LOCATION SCOUTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS TO BRING YOU IMAGES OF STUNNING LOCATIONS AROUND THE US. SOME ARE WELL-USED BY FILM CREWS, OTHERS ARE STILL TO BE MADE FAMOUS ON THE BIG OR SMALL SCREEN

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GRIFFITH OBSERVATORY, LOS ANGELES This view is from public astronomical facility Griffith Observatory, an iconic location for Los Angeles and its cinema history, and the best overlook viewpoint on the city. On a clear day it offers panoramic views of LA from the ocean to downtown and beyond. Nearby large municipal park Griffith Park is often used for filming.The Observatory featured in two major sequences of the James Dean film Rebel Without A Cause (1955) which helped to make it a recognisable emblem of California. Other films to have used this location include: Heat (1995), Transformers (2007) and La La Land (2016). TV productions shot here include 24, Adventures Of Superman and 90210. (Photo, courtesy Brian Bird, LMGI)

GOAT ROCK STATE BEACH, SONOMA COUNTY The naming of Goat Rock is disputed, but many accounts indicate that some early 20th-century goatherds used the flat grassy top of the formation for grazing goats. The Russian River, with its mouth at the north end of Goat Rock Beach, is Sonoma County's largest watercourse. The Sonoma Coast State Beaches are beautiful and diverse, with looks ranging from Ireland to New England to classic California. The area is very supportive of filming and there are no location fees to film on state property. The final scene of The Goonies (1985) was filmed here, and countless car, athletic and lifestyle commercials as well as print/web ads, made here year-round. (Photo, courtesy Baldwin Production Services)

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YOSEMITE FALLS This view of Yosemite Falls is from Glacier Point, Yosemite National Park. The 180-degree view also includes Yosemite Valley and granite rock formation Half Dome. Aside from the stunning natural views and the amazing light DP's love, the National Park Service is film-friendly and knowledgable of routes, weather systems and wildlife. Productions that have shot in this area include: Monty Python And The Holy Grail (1975), The Shining (1980), Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom (1984), Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989), The Last Of The Mohicans (1992) and Maverick (1994), as well as various travel and tourism commercials. (Photo, courtesy Chester Wong, LMGI)

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BRECKENRIDGE ROAD, KERN COUNTY This image shows Breckenridge Road, east of Comanche Drive. This vast landscape of rolling, green hills with winding, uninterrupted roads is a magnet for car commercials. The area can also double for many different locales. Kern County and nearby Bakersfield have been the setting for numerous movies over the years including: The Odd Couple II (1998), Planet Of The Apes (2001) and Jurassic Park III (2001). (Photo, courtesy Jo Amplo, LMGI)

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FEATURE FOCUS ON AUSTRALIA

IT’S ALL ABOUT TEAMWORK While films need to have Australia in their DNA to claim back 40% of their budget, international joint ventures are becoming more prevalent. Sandy George explains why Hacksaw Ridge — a film that would not have been made without Australia's producer offset

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THE OSCARS for 2017 had two Australian films in the running for Best Picture, for the first time ever. Lion is a heartfelt dramatisation of the true story of Saroo Brierley who, more than 20 years after being adopted from an orphanage in India and taken to Australia, uses Google Earth to find his aged natural mother. There were many Australians among the nominations: two of the three producers, Angie Fielder and Emile Sherman, (Sherman won the Best Picture Oscar in 2011 for The King’s Speech); supporting actress Nicole Kidman; adapted screenplay writer Luke Davies; and cinematographer Greig Fraser. The story told in Lion is set in Australia and India; it was filmed predominantly in Australia. Hacksaw Ridge, also based on real life, documents the bravery of a Seventh-day Adventist pacifist combat medic who won the US’ highest military honour for repeatedly risking his life to save 75 wounded colleagues during the brutal Battle of Okinawa in the Second World War. It received an Oscar nomination for its director Mel Gibson, who lived in Australia during his teens and twenties, and

shot to fame on the back of the first Mad Max film. Of the film’s six Oscar nominations, Australians Andy Wright, Robert Mackenzie and Peter Grace won the Academy Award for sound mixing, and New Zealand’s John Gilbert won for editing. Some of the story is also set in the US; the film was entirely filmed in Australia. Other Australian films that have been nominated for best picture in the past include: The Piano (1993), Babe (1995), Shine (1996), Moulin Rouge! (2001) and Mad Max: Fury Road (2015); but never two in the same year. Also for 2017 — again for the first time — an Australian film was nominated in the foreign-language category. Tanna is a love story set in the Pacific Island nation of Vanuatu and entirely filmed there. It was post-produced in Australia. Undeniably, Australia makes a range of very good films. It also has “one of the most generous financial incentives in the world”, says prominent film lawyer and executive producer Bryce Menzies. He is referring to the producer offset (PO), a tax rebate paid on completion of a film. It’s uncapped and it’s worth 40% of the qualifying Australian production expenditure. That expenditure must total at least A$500,000 for a film to be eligible. It’s at this point that savvy international producers accustomed to scouring planet Earth for the best film incentives might say: "Yes, but none of that is relevant to us, because the producer offset is only for Australian films.” They’re perfectly correct, but it seems that more and more Australian films are being made with serious international aspirations and attachments, and non-Australians in the key creative teams.

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FOX STUDIOS AUSTRALIA FILM STAGES I TV STUDIOS POST PRODUCTION I SOUND THE LARGEST INTEGRATED FACILITY IN THE SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE IN THE CENTRE OF SYDNEY • • • • • • • • • • •

9 sound stages from approx. 208 – 4,000 sqm / 2,236 – 42,000 sqft 2 mega stages of approx. 4,000 sqm / 42,000 sqft each Over 15,000 sqm / 160,000 sqft of production support facilities Backlots for exterior filming and nearby supplementary 30 hectare / 75 acre backlot Full industry eco system hub – lighting, camera, textiles, 3-D printing, post, animation, VFX, sound, scoring, pyrotechnics, aerial cinematography Water facilities – interior tank with dimensions 12 x 18 x 3 m / 39 x 59 x 10 ft and also external large scale tank 10 min nearby Stunning and diverse locations – tropical, coastal, jungle, mountains, arid, alpine, metro and urban Academy Award winning crew Production services – incentives, government liaison, legal and financial services Close proximity to Sydney city centre (10min) and international airport (15min) Credits include Pacific Rim: Uprising, Peter Rabbit, Alien: Covenant, Hacksaw Ridge, Gods of Egypt, Mad Max: Fury Road, Truth, Unbroken, The Water Diviner, The Lego Movie, The Great Gatsby, The Wolverine, Australia, Happy Feet, Superman Returns, Star Wars II and III and The Matrix

CONTACT: Lynda Carruthers Head of Production Services P +61 2 9383 4035 E lynda.carruthers@foxaus.com Barbra Mckay Production Manager P +61 2 9383 4134 E barbra.mckay@foxaus.com W www.foxstudiosaustralia.com

Alien: Covenant © Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, All Rights Reserved; Truth © Sony, All Rights Reserved; Mad Max: Fury Road © Warner Bros, All Rights Reserved; The Great Gatsby © Warner Bros, All Rights Reserved; The Matrix © Warner Bros, All Rights Reserved; Gods of Egypt © Lionsgate, All Rights Reserved; Hacksaw Ridge © Cross Creek Pictures, All Rights Reserved; Unbroken © Legendary, All Rights Reserved; Happy Feet © Warner Bros, All Rights Reserved; The Water Diviner © Fear of God Films, All Rights Reserved; The Lego Movie © Warner Bros, All Rights Reserved, Australia © Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, All Rights Reserved; Superman Returns © Warner Bros, All Rights Reserved; Star Wars © Lucasfilm, All Rights Reserved, The Wolverine © Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, All Rights Reserved.

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FEATURE FOCUS ON AUSTRALIA

US producers Bill Mechanic and David Permut worked with Australians Bruce Davey and Paul Currie on Hacksaw Ridge, making it the perfect example. Mechanic worked with Gibson more than 20 years earlier on Braveheart (1995). Sherman has a permanent UK business partner. Many others are in production. Take the supernatural thriller Winchester, in which Helen Mirren plays a character based on US firearms heiress Sarah Winchester. After inheriting a fortune in the 1880s, Winchester spent decades designing and building a sprawling mansion in California’s San Jose. Some said Winchester Mystery House was haunted by the souls of people killed by the Winchester repeater rifle. A script was written by American Tom Vaughan; now, the thoroughly American story is in the hands of Australian writer/director brothers Michael and Peter Spierig, who filmed at Docklands Studios and other Melbourne locations, before heading off to film at the actual house. Winchester is produced by Australia’s Tim McGahan and America’s Brett Tomberlin. It has sold well, including to CBS Films in the US and Lionsgate in the UK. Another example is the sci-fi thriller Stem. Writer/director Leigh Whannell, co-creator of the successful Saw franchise, returned to Australia from Los Angeles in time for cameras to roll in late January 2017. The producers are Australia’s Kylie du Fresne and Americans Jason Blum and Brian Kavanaugh-Jones. Whannell and Blum worked together on the Insidious franchise. Blum is making a habit of working with Australian directors, but not necessarily in Australia: he was on The Darkness (2016) with

Greg McLean and on The Gift (2015) with Joel Edgerton. Both filmed in the US and Australian-born, US-based producer Rebecca Yeldham was also on the latter. Coincidentally, Whannell’s long-time collaborator James Wan is back in Australia to direct the US superhero movie Aquaman (2018) for Warner Bros. and DC Comics. Another example is Breath (2017), now in post-production and adapted from Australian author Tim Winton’s novel. Renowned US producer Mark Johnson was in Australia to make Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark (2010) when he read and admired the book. Breath is the directorial debut of expatriate Australian Simon Baker, star of the TV series The Mentalist. Baker and Australia’s Jamie Hilton are the other two producers. This is Johnson’s fourth film in Australia, but his first to access funding specifically for Australian films. Peter Rabbit (2018) for Columbia Pictures is helmed by US director Will Gluck. The film, which mixes live action and animation, has been in development at production house Animal Logic for two years and centres on the much-loved character created by Beatrix Potter. All Animal Logic’s work is with US partners. So what exactly are the tricks and traps of achieving Australian film status and therefore being able to claim 40% of your budget under the PO Films granted official co-production status under the treaties Australia has with 12 countries automatically qualify. Recent examples include The Nest with China, Maya The Bee Movie with Germany, Life with Germany and Canada, The Railway Man with the UK, Adoration with France, and Lore with Germany and the UK. In all, there are 12 official co-production arrangements, with the other ter-

THREE OF THE BEST

A

USTRALIA has a trio of tax rebates. There are two offsets in addition to the producer offset (PO), both squarely aimed at international filmmakers. The location offset is worth 16.5% of Australian expenditure, which must exceed A$15m. The post, digital and visual effects (PDV) offset is worth 30% of expenditure, which must exceed A$500,000. There is no political will to push up the location offset, but extra funding is available on a case-bycase basis for US blockbusters, such as Alien: Covenant (2017) and Thor: Ragnarok (2017). Requests can be channelled through Ausfilm’s Sydney-based CEO Debra Richards. The number of jobs and expenditure drives decisions. “The simplest, best

thing to do is increase the location offset to 30%, then no one has to make the decisions and it’s not Humphrey B. Bear, first in, first served,” a TV character that has entertained Australian Richards says. pre-schoolers for more Aquaman got extra than 50 years, outside sound stage 9 at the money and shot in all nine Gold Coast’s Village Roadshow Studios sound stages at the Gold Coast’s Village Roadshow Studios for most of 2017. Studio president Lynne Benzie will experience a change of pace in 2018 in the form of squash, table tennis, boxing and badminton. Training begins in January for the XXI Commonwealth Games, ready for permanent — new arrival at the April event. Humphrey B. Bear, a TV character Village Roadshow. A feature film that has entertained Australian is rumoured. Meanwhile, Pacific pre-schoolers for more than 50 Rim: Uprising is currently at Fox years, is another unusual — and Studios Australia.

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FEATURE FOCUS ON AUSTRALIA

ritories being Ireland, Israel, Italy, Korea, New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa. “Making an independent film over a certain budget — for more than A$15m, for example — can be very difficult,” says Tim Phillips, head of the producer offset and co-production unit at the federal agency Screen Australia. “Perhaps it would not be possible to raise the money from just from one territory, but it might be from two. Co-productions allow this.” In the case of Australia, Phillips is not just referring to the automatic access a co-production gets to the PO, but also the direct funding available from Screen Australia: it is discretionary funding, but co-production status makes a film eligible to at least throw its hat into the ring. “It’s still not easy to raise the money, but it makes it possible, especially if the project suits — that is, if the story spans two countries,” Phillips adds. “If applying for additional Screen Australia funding, it can be hard to hit the sweet spot: I can’t see a Chinese-language film set in China getting direct finance for example.” Nevertheless, there is a lot of interest in co-productions with China, because films made under the treaty are treated as Chinese and avoid having to scramble to be included in the annual quota for non-Chinese films.

State government agencies also have money for production. The Western Australian Regional Film Fund is worth watching right now. It is a bit unusual in that it wants films that contribute to the liveability and vibrancy of regional communities. Many films are not suited to being made as co-productions, or else there is no treaty with the appropriate country. There is no treaty between Australia and the US, for example. So how do American films gain Australian status and the 40%? Films that are not co-productions have to pass what’s called a “significant Australian content” (SAC) test. It takes into account a range of matters, from story to the locations used, from the nationalities of the creators and where they live to where the production expenditure will occur. It’s about creative and commercial ownership, in particular. Phillips says: “It’s helpful if it’s a very Australian story, but there are plenty of examples where films with non-Australian source material or a non-Australian setting have [passed the SAC test] and accessed the PO — providing Australians creatively drive it.” The PO is administered by Screen Australia, but Phillips is not able to provide information about what has and has not accessed the PO — the money is actually paid out via the Australian Taxation

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be difficult for genre films, because they aren’t well patronised at Office and strict confidentiality is built into the tax legislation. the Australian box office.” It can be safely assumed though — given that producers are not He adds: “The PO is reliable once you get a provisional certifiknow for passing up free cash — that most films that are clearly Auscate, and it doesn’t have the restrictions that co-productions have. tralian have received the PO. Also, producers are free to talk about It’s one of the most generous financial incentives in the world. It’s their own situation and, in fact, Mechanic has publicly stated that uncapped. Australia is not a third-world country, the crews are prothe independently financed Hacksaw Ridge would not have been fessionals and there are great restaurants. And it’s not a bad place to made without the PO. At least two big-budget films financed by US spend three months.” studios have also accessed the PO, according to their producer/ So why is it not used more? “They have to be genuine coldirectors: The Great Gatsby (2013) and Mad Max: Fury Road (2015). laborations. It’s not a system you can abuse that easily. And that’s None of these three films looks Australian. good. You will be dealing with the tax department and it’s not The way Phillips explains it is that, to get through the SAC test good to lie to them because you and to lay claim to the PO, the films might go to jail.” “have to have Australia in their BRYCE MENZIES Talk to others about barriers DNA”. Asked whether there is and some say international prouncertainty in the process, he says ducers don’t want to hand over any it is a holistic test rather than a control, don’t want to film abroad, tick-a-box or points-based test. don’t have trusted relationships or “Some might say that injects suitable projects, or are unfamiliar uncertainty, but it’s also potentially with Australia. a benefit, because it means the creIt can be a source of angst for ative team can come in and make those in Australian film that so their case,” he adds. “And you will many of their country’s talented have certainty because you can get creators, actors and behind-thea provisional certificate and, if you camera practitioners end up stick to the project as it’s submitted working in the US and London at the provisional stage, it will get because of the immensely greater a final certificate. But not if the opportunities and potential contiAustralian director has been nuity of work. That said, the PO replaced by a British or American can provide a great opportunity one.” for expats to do a film or two back Jo Dillon, head of develophome. US-based Australian proment and production at state ducer Bruna Papandrea, for agency Screen Queensland, says example, is on board Jennifer Kent’s follow-up to The Babadook international producers can bring ideas to Australian producers or (2014). find Australian producers with projects with the potential to reach Kate Marks heads the US office of Ausfilm, the organisation international audiences. She talks of several films in development tasked with attracting high-budget production to Australia. She sells that could have more of an international feel built into them, includpeople on all three of Australia’s financial incentives: the producer ing Prize Fighter, the adaptation of a biographical play by former offset, the location offset, and post, digital and visual-effects Congolese child soldier turned playwright Future D Fidel. offset. Menzies says he often gets phone calls from US producers: In the four months up to December 2016, Ausfilm was actively “They say, ‘Bryce, I’ve got this great script, I’ve got a great Australtracking and in discussions on 14 projects looking to film in Australia ian director and I need a [producing] partner. Oh and we want to and access the PO. “Thirteen of these were independent and only start shooting it tomorrow…’ It’s too late [to set it up as Australian] one a studio film,” Marks says. “However, many are in very early then.” development and could become attached to studios. At times, there It is generally necessary, Menzies adds, to have either an Ausare many more studio films in the mix.” tralian writer or an Australian director involved, but it is also Marks is in constant conversation with Americans. If she finds important to get an Australian producing partner — and the earlier there’s a script in the pile that has been written by an Australian — the better: “If the film was developed with an Australian producer, Los Angeles is crawling with them, after all — and could have more and that producer was looking at every draft, and there’s an Austral‘Australianness’ built into it, she is quick to promote all Australia’s ian director on board, the brownie points are mounting up. It’s not filmmaking attributes. just about Australia in front of the camera — it’s Australia behind the Ausfilm is very focused on Australian talent, believing it to be camera. If an LA producer was to poke a few of the people around the best way to draw internationals to the country. Ausfilm runs them, they’d probably find a few Australians.” ‘Partner with Australia’ events annually in Los Angeles and from Menzies final piece of advice for international producers is that now there will be directors, writers and heads of department going a film has to have an Australian distributor that intends to release it alongside producers. theatrically — and they should be a little wary about that: “That can

“It’s not just about Australia in front of the camera — it’s Australia behind the camera. If an LA producer was to poke a few of the people around them, they’d probably find a few Australians”

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LOCATION IN PICTURES INTERNATIONAL

LOCATION INTERNATIONAL HAS TEAMED UP WITH FILM AND TOURIST OFFICES, LOCATION SCOUTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS TO BRING YOU IMAGES OF STUNNING LOCATIONS AROUND THE WORLD. SOME ARE WELL-USED BY FILM CREWS, OTHERS ARE STILL TO BE MADE FAMOUS ON THE BIG OR SMALL SCREEN

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VANDERGRIFT, PA, US Vandergrift is a borough in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, approximately 30 miles northeast of Pittsburgh. Early in the 20th century, it had the largest sheet steel mill in the world. Providing the typical small industrial town look it was used for exterior shots in the 2011 sci-fi film I Am Number Four. Vandergrift also doubled as the fictional Amish Pennsylvania town of Banshee in the fourth series of crime drama TV series Banshee (2013-16). Nearby Pittsburgh has been the location for more than 60 films and television productions including: The Deer Hunter (1978), Silence Of The Lambs (1991) and Hoffa (1992). (Photo, courtesy James A Mahathey, LGMI)

AL RAS, DUBAI, UAE Al Ras, translating as The Cape, is one of the oldest communities in Deira, an area in Dubai that borders Dubai Creek. Crossing the Dubai Creek by boat and small motorised taxis called abras is popular for many of the city’s residents and tourists. The abras can hold up to 20 people and offer the cheapest and fastest means of travelling between Deira and Bur Dubai. Deira is one of the oldest parts of Dubai and home to many colourful souks and street markets including the Gold Souk, Textile Souk and Spice Souk. Recent film projects shot in Dubai include: Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011), Fast & Furious 7 (2015) and Star Trek Beyond (2016). (Photo, courtesy Peter Gluck, LMGI)

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VALLEY OF A THOUSAND HILLS, DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA In KwaZulu-Natal, between Pietermaritzburg and Durban, The Valley of a Thousand Hills lies where the Msunduzi River meets the Umgeni River. The valley is named after the numerous hills and cliffs along the Umgeni River as it flows down from the Drakensberg mountains to the Indian Ocean. The valley has been home to the Zulu people for centuries, and there are many inhabitants who continue to live in traditional ways. Also on the crest of the hills overlooking the valley are examples of leafy suburbs and villages, with astonishing views and a year-round climate of warm summers and cool winters. This region is an untouched gem waiting to be discovered by filmmakers. (Photo, courtesy Durban Film Office)

MANAROLA, CINQUE TERRE, ITALY Manarola is a small fishing village in the province of La Spezia, Liguria, in northern Italy. It is the second smallest of the Cinque Terre towns, a string of centuries-old seaside villages on the rugged Italian Riviera coastline. Features of the five towns — the others being Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia and Riomaggiore — include colourful houses, vineyards on steep terraces, harbours filled with fishing boats and trattorias. Movies shot here include: Come September (1961), 500! (2001), Vendemmia (2012) and Dans La Peau D’Italo Calvino (2012). (Photo, courtesy Kristine Delgado, LMGI)

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VALLE DE LOS CONDORES, SAN CLEMENTE, MAULE REGION, CHILE This waterfall stands in an area famous for climbing, close to a huge mountain lagoon called Laguna del Maule. The Laguna lies in a volcanic field in Chile’s Andes mountain range partly overlapping the ChileArgentina frontier. The bulk of the volcanic field is in the Talca province of the Maule region. Close to Santiago City, the area provides unique scenery and has good access by road. Under-used by the filmmakers this area recently hosted an Audi Q5 spot called ‘Now is calling’. (Photo, courtesy Olivier Lebourgeois, LMGI)

BRECKENRIDGE, CO, US Breckenridge is a Colorado town at the base of the Rocky Mountains’ Tenmile Range. It is known for its ski resort, year-round alpine activities and Gold Rush history. The picturesque mountains dominate the horizon, with water features and treefilled vistas providing year-round natural beauty. The climate includes many sunny days, allowing filmmakers a good chance of a solid schedule. Car commercials take advantage of the winding mountain roads, while period productions can benefit from authentic structures and Gold-Rush era architecture. The movie Dumb And Dumber (1994) used Breckenridge as a substitute for Aspen. Other movies filmed here include: National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989), Fifty (1999) and The Lodge (2008). (Photo, courtesy Rik Nagel, LMGI)

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DONGJIAKOU SHIPPING PORT, HUANGDAO, QINGDAO CITY, SHANDONG PROVINCE, CHINA The Port of Qingdao stands on the Yellow Sea close to Qingdao in Shandong Province. It is one of the 10 busiest ports in the world. There is also a naval base in Qingdao as well as an industrial centre. The world's longest sea bridge, the Jiaozhou Bay Bridge, links the main urban area of Qingdao with Huangdao district, straddling Jiaozhou Bay. Qingdao is also home to one of the most technically advanced and newest movie studios in the world, Wanda Studios and Qingdao Movie Metropolis. Notable movies filmed in Qingdao include: The Great Wall (2016), Pacific Rim: Uprising (2018) and upcoming Godzilla: King Of Monsters (2019). (Photo, courtesy Dow Griffith, LMGI)

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RIP VAN WINKLE BRIDGE, CATSKILL, NY, US The Rip Van Winkle Bridge is a cantilever bridge spanning the Hudson River between Hudson and Catskill in New York state. This photo was taken in Catskill on the west side of the river. The bridge is named after the 1819 short story by local writer Washington Irving. Many films have been shot over the years in Hudson, NY, including Paul Newman in Nobody's Fool (1994), and it is also popular for TV shows and commercials. The bridge was recently used in the filming of the finale of Amazon TV series Z: The Beginning Of Everything (2016). (Photo, courtesy John Hutchinson, LMGI)

FEZ, MOROCCO Fez is a northeastern Moroccan city, close to the Atlas Mountains, often referred to as the country’s cultural capital — it was actually the country’s capital city until 1925. It is primarily known for its Fes El Bali walled medina, with medieval Marinid architecture, vibrant souks and old-world atmosphere. Fes El Bali is listed as a World Heritage Site and is believed to be one of the world's largest urban pedestrian zones. Though the city also has a modern area it has been called the ‘Mecca of the West’ and the ‘Athens of Africa’. Films shot here include: The Sheltering Sky (1990) (Photo, courtesy Christian McWilliams, LMGI)

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CATHEDRAL OF ST. PAUL, SAINT PAUL, MN, US Built between 1904-1915, The Cathedral of St. Paul is the third largest completed church in the US, and the fourth tallest. It is also on the US National Registry of Historic Places. It is a fine example of neoclassical architecture and is illuminated by twenty-four stained glass windows. St. Paul is the capital of Minnesota and lies largely on the east bank of the Mississippi River, at the confluence with the Minnesota River, and adjoins Minneapolis, the state’s largest city. Together they are known as the Twin Cities. Numerous documentaries have featured the location and most recently it was home to the Red Bull Crashed Ice 2017 World Championship.  (Photo, courtesy Lane Pelovsky - lpvisuals.com)

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ANSELMO MINE, BUTTE, MT, US Butte was one of the largest cities in the Rocky Mountains in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Located in Silver Bow County, the city’s population declined with falling copper prices after World War I. In its heyday it was one of the largest and most notorious copper boomtowns in the American West, home to hundreds of saloons and a famous red-light district. This picture captures the winter fog and snow-capped roofs of Uptown Butte where the Anselmo Mine stands as a testament to its boomtown days. Films shot here include: Thousand Pieces Of Gold (1991), Don’t Come Knocking (2005), Love Comes To The Executioner (2006), Dead 7 (2016) and Who Killed Cock Robin (2017). HGTV series Butte-ification also shot here and numerous TV commercials. (Photo, courtesy Butte America / Montana Standard)

LAKE TUZKOL, KAZAKHSTAN Tuzkol is a salty mountain lake in southeastern Kazakhstan, on the left bank of the river Charyn in the south-east of the Almaty region. At 1,959 metres above sea level, it feeds exclusively on groundwater. In clear weather you can see the peaks of Tien Shan and Khan Tengri and, to its right, the trapeze-shaped Peak Pobeda. The salinity of the lake varies by season and can reach a level almost the same as that of the Dead Sea in Israel or Great Salt Lake in Utah in the US. Director B Jaya filmed two songs for her film Vysakham (2016) in Kazakhstan, making it the first Indian film to be shot there. (Photo, courtesy Deonisy Mit/Aurora Studio)

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BORA BORA CORAL REEF, FRENCH POLYNESIA Bora Bora is part of the Leeward Group of islands in French Polynesia, located deep in the South Pacific. The largest island in French Polynesia is Tahiti, 140 miles southwest of Bora Bora. This aerial shot shows a deep lagoon which separates the island from the barrier reef. The island is blessed with distinctive tropicalparadise landscapes. Notable films shot here include: Mutiny On The Bounty (1962), The Bounty (1984), Love Affair (1994), TV movie South Pacific (2001) and The Stonecutter (2007). (Photo, courtesy Dow Griffith, LMGI)

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FEATURE FOCUS ON THE UK

2016 broke all production records in the United Kingdom, with total spend on film production topping £1.6bn — a 13% increase on 2015 and the highest figure ever recorded. The reason? Great talent, studios, facilities, locations and crews — and not just in London, but across the UK’s nations and regions — underpinned by a supportive fiscal environment. Andy Fry reports

FILMING THE KINGDOM Claire Foy as Anne Boleyn in the BBC’s Wolf Hall

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FEATURE FOCUS ON THE UK

THE QUALITY of the UK’s crews, craftspeople, studios, post-production houses and locations has always made it a popular choice for local and visiting film and TV productions. But in recent years, two additional factors have driven the business to new heights. The first is the extension of the UK’s tax-credit regime to cover high-end TV series, a government-backed initiative that, overnight, stopped many producers from heading for mainland Europe in search of cheaper locations and/or incentives. The second is the boom in TV-drama production, which has brought a wide array of limited and returning series to the UK. While London has undoubtedly benefited from this, the production sector in the UK nations and regions has also seen a surge in activity. Today, it is no exaggeration to say that you will find bigbudget productions taking place across the country, from Cornwall (Poldark) to the Scottish Highlands (The Loch), from Northern Ire-

land (The Woman In White) to the Kent coast (The Tunnel). Wales, Bristol, Yorkshire, the north west of England and the Isle of Man are all notable beneficiaries of the boom. Going back a couple of years, the highly acclaimed BBC2 period drama series Wolf Hall — set in the time of King Henry VIII — was shot entirely on location around the UK, in places of the era and, as director Peter Kosminsky says, some where the characters that are depicted actually trod. Producer Mark Pybus says that originally the shoot was planned for Belgium, but a delay of 18 months — down to the availability of Mark Rylance who played Thomas Cromwell — was enough time for the high-end TV tax relief to kick in and so the production came back home. “Then Peter Kosminsky came on board and he was someone who always filmed on location; that was something key to him and therefore [locations] became key to the production,” Pybus says. “I think that’s rare for this kind of production. You’d normally be film-

JONATHAN PRYCE

“All the wood, that’s what I remember most — on the floors and the walls, the age and beauty of the wood” ing 40-50% on a stage, which is easier though not necessarily cheaper. But having made that decision, one thing we had to deal with was that there are only so many appropriate Tudor buildings in the UK and you use up the ones near your base and then you get further and further away and by the end its like a massive Tudor circus bouncing around England and it’s very tiring. But it does give you something different on screen and for the actors to turn up

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dios and around Northern Ireland’s exquisite coastal and rural to these locations knowing the characters they were portraying had locations has acted as a calling card to other big-budget productions. been in them many times, it would give you an extra spring in your Northern Ireland Screen’s head of marketing, communications and step.” audiences, Moyra Lock, says: “Over the past 12 months, we’ve had Actor Jonathan Pryce played Cardinal Wolsey. “There were a great variety of indigenous and incoming film and TV drama. many houses, and I enjoyed that,” he says. “All the wood, that’s what Game Of Thrones completed filming season seven in February and I remember most — on the floors and the walls, the age and beauty BBC1’s Line Of Duty filmed here late last year. On the feature-film of the wood. And the gardens, because we shot in the summer we front, The Lost City Of Z shot here and premiered at the Berlin Film were seeing the gardens in their prime.” Festival. We’re also building our indigenous work, so were pleased Pryce says he was aware that moving from location to location to see local filmmakers Chris was “a trying experience for everyBaugh and Brendan Mullin taking one else, but I would just turn up KEN SKATES their first feature, Bad Day For The occasionally and enjoy my time. Cut, to the Sundance Film But the production in general was Festival.” incredibly hard work, and it Coming into 2017, one of shows.” Northern Ireland’s most eye“We were able to approach the catching productions is BBC One’s series in this way as we had the lavish adaptation of Wilkie Collins’ financial possibility to bring the classic psychological thriller, The show back to Britain,” Kosminsky Woman In White. A 5 x 60 mins says. “And it was all down to Mark series by Origin Pictures, the show [Pybus], because he knew that in is shooting in Northern Ireland for the South West of England there 13 weeks. were these amazing properties Growth in Northern Ireland’s from the period and so the idea to production base has also given the do it all on location simply evolved local industry confidence to invest really. And because I come from a further, Lock says. In addition to documentary background, I’ve expansion at Titanic Studios, this spring will see the opening of the done very little on stage. I was always going to prefer going on locanew Belfast Harbour Studios. A $30m enterprise, the new facility is tion if we could; I’m used to it and I like it.” expected to offer 64,000 sq ft (5,945 sq m) of studio space and For some areas of the UK nations and regions, the upturn builds 36,000 sq ft of production offices. on work that was already being done to attract production. NorthThe Northern Ireland boom has been echoed by developments ern Ireland, for example, has been offering additional incentives in Wales. Here, inward investment by the BBC and support from over and above the UK tax breaks for a number of years. This bold the Welsh government has transformed the local production sector. gamble paid off big time when it persuaded HBO’s blockbuster All four series of the BBC’s Sherlock, for example, were backed by series Games Of Thrones to come to the province in 2010. Six years the Welsh National Assembly, assisted by Wales Screen, and based on and Northern Ireland Screen CEO Richard Williams reckons in Cardiff. that the production has been worth £150m in terms of bringing jobs Commenting on its progress, economy and infrastructure cabiand services to the region. net secretary Ken Skates says: “Since 2012 we have hosted 185 Not only that, Game Of Thrones’ work at Belfast’s Titanic Stu-

“Since 2012 we have hosted 185 film and TV productions. These productions spent more than £138.6m, boosting local economies throughout Wales”

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www.creativescotlandlocations.com E locations@creativescotland.com T +44 (0) 141 302 1724 Loch Ard, The Trossachs Photo: Richard Burdon/Scottish Viewpoint

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of the world-famous studio firm. Announced in 2014, the facility film and TV productions in Wales. These productions spent more opened for business in 2015 with The Bastard Executioner and than £138.6m, boosting local economies throughout Wales.” recently hosted Journey’s End. Other productions that have used As with Northern Ireland, Wales has had success attracting a the studio include Sherlock, Class, Show Dogs and Crossing The mix of high-end domestic dramas and international productions. Border. Alongside series including Da Vinci’s Demons, The Bastard ExecuCurrently, Pinewood Wales comprises two 20,000 sq ft stages tioner, Sherlock and The Collection, recent projects to come to and an additional 38,000 sq ft multi-use shooting floor. The comWales include Born To Kill and Journey’s End, a feature film based plex also includes office space, production-support facilities and a on the classic play by RC Sherriff. media hub. According to the Pinewood Studios Group’s communiGuy de Beaujeu, producer of Journey’s End, says: “Filming in cations manager, Julia Jones, part Wales gave us access to a wide of the Welsh studio’s remit is to range of locations not previously NATALIE USHER raise the profile of Wales as a filmseen in film or TV, which is always ing location. But it also helps the a bonus, particularly when filming Welsh government with the period dramas.” administration of its £30m Media In November, Skates also Development Fund. announced that Dragon Studios in Pinewood has a similar Pencoed had just started filming arrangement with the Isle of Man, Will, the biggest budget US TV where there is a £25m Media production ever to be shot in Development Fund, which can be Wales. A high-end drama based on used in conjunction with the the early life of William ShakeWelsh Fund and equity investment speare, the show — for US cable from Pinewood itself. Recent films channel TNT — is expected to in which the Isle of Man Fund has generate £18m for the local econinvested include: The Disappearomy during its nine-month stay at ance Of Alice Creed (2009); TT3D: Dragon. Closer To The Edge (2011); Belle (2013); and Dom Hemingway Explaining the appeal of basing Will in Wales, executive pro(2013); and TV mini-series The Shadow Line (2011). ducer Alison Owen says: “Using Dragon’s four stages and its A recent film to shoot on the Isle of Man — Where Hands Touch extensive backlot, we have been able to create a whole world in one — wrapped in December 2016. Filmed on location in the north of place. The streets of Shakespeare’s London are spread out on the the island (with backing from Pinewood), the film is a wartime drabacklot, while the theatre takes up a whole stage. Additional interior ma starring Amandla Stenberg (The Hunger Games), George sets complete the show's universe.” MacKay (Pride), Abbie Cornish (Somersault) and Christopher Also important, Owen adds, are Wales’ “breathtaking locations Ecclestone (Shallow Grave). Set in Berlin in 1944, it follows a bithat give scope and breadth to the show's visual landscape. The close racial German teenager (Stenberg), who begins a friendship with a proximity of so many locations has given us an ease and efficiency, member of the Hitler youth (MacKay). For the shoot, a Second enabling us to be ambitious with our show, giving us terrific bang World War workers’ camp was constructed on Jurby Airfield. There for our buck and putting budget on the screen.” was also filming at the nearby studios at Mountain View Innovation Wales’ growth as a production hub has been further enhanced Centre and Knockaloe near Peel. by the arrival of Pinewood Studio Wales, a Cardiff-based extension

“Scotland’s talent, crews, facilities and locations continue to be of huge attraction to international productions"

The centre of Scotland’s film and T V production industry Fantastic locations, skilled crew, and all UK tax credits apply to qualifying productions

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Game Of Thrones shooting at Belfast's Titanic Studios

Heading North, Scotland’s disadvantage when compared with Wales and Northern Ireland is the lack of a major studio complex. But this has not stopped it delivering record revenues year after year in film and TV production. In 2015 — the latest year on record — film and TV producers spent £52.7m shooting in Scotland, up £7m compared with 2014. Natalie Usher, director of screen at Creative Scotland, says the figures prove that “Scotland’s talent, crews, facilities and locations continue to be of huge attraction to international productions. In the last 12 months, we have seen Sony and Starz maintain their commitment to a large production base at Cumbernauld [Outlander], we welcomed Jason Connery’s film Tommy’s Honour, and it was great to see our capital city [Edinburgh] double for Victorian London in the BBC’s The Secret Agent.” Usher also points to the impact of Scotland’s Production Growth Fund. Launched in September 2015 and worth a total of £3m to date, it has helped secure high-profile projects including T2 Trainspotting (2017), which received £500,000. There is no question that a big part of Scotland’s appeal is that if offers a mix of great rural and urban locations. Sometimes these are used to play themselves, but often they are attractive to producers for their ability to double — or to impersonate fantasy worlds. This range of options means that the work coming into Scotland is nicely spread. Edinburgh, for example, has recently hosted BBC productions Trust Me and Clique. Jennifer Reynolds, Glasgow Film Office film commissioner, says: “We had a busy 2016 in Glasgow. Recent productions include TV dramas Rillington Place, The Replacement and The Loch. Features include [2017's] T2 Trainspotting, The Wife and Churchill. As the storyline in Outlander progresses, Glasgow has been able to secure some of the more contemporary locations required.”

The Wife is a particularly prestigious project. Based on the novel by Meg Wolitzer, it stars Glenn Close as the long-suffering wife of a talented novelist, played by Jonathan Pryce. Also in the cast is Christian Slater. The film was produced by Piers Tempest, who also brought Churchill to Scotland. Commenting on the experience, he says: “With the support of Creative Scotland and the Production Growth Fund, we had an extremely positive experience filming Churchill in Scotland, and it felt like the natural place to bring our film The Wife.” Aside from the lure of the fund, Reynolds says Glasgow is an attractive base for a number of reasons: “We have a wealth of experienced crew across all departments. In addition, there are established facilities, services and post-production outfits based in Glasgow. The city comes under the control of a single, local

PIERS TEMPEST

“Glasgow has proven itself to be very accommodating to large-scale productions seeking a city-centre location for elaborate stunts”

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NORTHERN IRELAND THE MOST COMPACT 5,196 SQUARE MILES OF BACK-LOT IN THE WORLD. With its strong crew base, stunning locations, studio facilities and financial incentives, Northern Ireland is becoming one of the most sought-after filming locations for both film and television productions.

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Northern Ireland Screen is here to help facilitate your project and provides free hands-on assistance and guidance. Please contact us for more information: www.northernirelandscreen.co.uk

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FEATURE FOCUS ON THE UK

ground. It would also help if there was a Scottish governmentauthority — one that has proven itself to be very accommodating to backed film unit, with commercial responsibilities.” large-scale productions seeking a city-centre location for elaborate As yet, there are no firm plans on the studio front, but there are stunts. The city centre has a variety of architectural styles and, withtwo promising developments. Firstly, there is talk of a new complex in an hour’s drive from Glasgow, you can be in seemingly remote being built outside Edinburgh — Pentland Studios — though this is countryside or coastline.” moving slowly through planning. Secondly, there are proposals to Of course, if you really want remote, then go to the Scottish create a permanent studio in Cumbernauld —Wardpark Studios — Highlands and Islands, home to some of the most spectacular locawhere Starz’s Outlander is filmed. The Scottish government is tions in the entire UK. “We cover an area that is bigger than Belgium, considering backing this project with £4m. but has a population of just 250,000,” says the region’s film officer, Turning to England, the most eye-catching stories relate to Lawrence Sutcliffe. “We are home to some iconic locations, such as Yorkshire, the Northwest and Bristol. Like Northern Ireland Screen, Loch Ness, Ben Nevis and the Isle of Skye, but there’s also a wealth Screen Yorkshire was quick to spot the film and TV opportunity, of less familiar locations if producers are looking for something not opening up the Yorkshire Content Fund in 2012. Since then, it has seen before.” hosted a string of high-profile productions. Typically, Highlands locations will be used in conjunction with Examples include TV series Victoria, produced by Mammoth studio work in England and Wales, or urban shoots out of Aberdeen, Screen for ITV. The show returned to Yorkshire in February 2017 to Edinburgh, Glasgow or English cities. “But we can also offer urban start filming on a second eight-part on a small scale with Inverness,” series and a two-hour Christmas Sutcliffe adds. NATALIE MOORE special. Other TV productions to In tune with the wider trend, have been based in Yorkshire Sutcliffe says it has been a busy include National Treasure and Jonyear in the Highlands: “Transathan Strange & Mr Norrell. But it formers [Transformers: The Last is also noticeable that the county Knight, 2017] came to the Isle of has built up a formidable slate of Skye and ITV’s The Loch was also film projects too. After Dad’s Army in the region. We also had Edie in 2015, it has gone on to host 2017 [2017], an independent film starreleases: Paddy Considine’s Jourring Sheila Hancock. In addition, neyman; Clio Barnard’s Dark River, we get a regular run of commerJeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman’s cials and smaller TV projects.” Ghost Stories; and How To Talk To Sutcliffe acknowledges that Girls At Parties, a Neil Gaiman the Highlands are not ideally set adaptation starring Elle Fanning, up for accommodating blockbustNicole Kidman and Alex Sharp. er movie crews. But the fact that A big boost for Yorkshire came in 2015 when agreement was The BFG (2016), Prometheus (2012) and Transformers have all shot reached to turn RAF Church Fenton into a 100,000 sq ft shooting on Skye is indicative of the region’s can-do attitude. The latter shot facility called Church Fenton Yorkshire Studios. The first project in around locations including the Quiraing and Trotternish Ridge. was Victoria, which shot season one in late 2015 and early 2016. At One company with a well-established base in Scotland is film the time, Mammoth Screen’s managing director, Damien Timmer, and TV effects, props and sets firm Artem. Company founder and said the studios “give us all the space we need for our massively CEO Mike Kelt says: “Our Glasgow office is smaller than London ambitious studio build, are a stone’s throw from Leeds and close to [3,000 sq ft against 20,000 sq ft], but it offers similar services — the many fantastic locations that we’ll need to capture the grandeur although the requirements in Scotland are more likely to be for and opulence that the series demands”. on-set physical floor effects. As a result, the Glasgow team has extenUnderlining the point, the studio acts as the central Buckingsive equipment aimed at rain, snow, mist, fog, wind, pyrotechnics ham Palace set on Victoria, while local period locations including and fire.” Recent projects for Artem include T2 Trainspotting, TV Harewood House and Beverley Minster are also used. series The Replacement and various commercials. A rebound in Bristol’s status as a film hub is also linked to the Overall, Kelt says the business — which serves as a kind of opening of a studio, according to Natalie Moore, manager of Bristol barometer of the sector — is doing well: “There has been a recent Film Office. “We have a lot of great crews,” she says. “But the addimove to increase staffing and to generally upgrade the workshop tion of a studio close to London and Cardiff has helped us.” The facilities. The tax breaks — in particular, the TV tax breaks — have studio in question is The Bottle Yard, a Bristol City Council-backed attracted work to the UK and to Scotland. And right now, the lower operation that opened for business in 2010. Picking up the story, value of the pound is also helping.” Fiona Francombe, site director at The Bottle Yard Studios, says: “We Like many stakeholders in the Scottish film and TV business, have eight stages and we tend to focus on high-end television, which Kelt says the one thing that would transform the industry’s prosis our main skillset. I think clients like the fact that we are very flexpects would be “a professional Scottish studio”. He adds: “To ible and budget-friendly.” properly achieve this, there needs to be positive Scottish governProjects that have been through The Bottle Yard’s doors ment help, probably through Scottish Enterprise, to get it off the

“Georgian and Victorian is easy to do in Bristol and there’s a real diversity of locations, from modern urban in the city to period properties outside it”

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The grand St George’s Hall became a banquet hall for a black-tie recently include Broadchurch, Poldark, The Living And The Dead event that is disrupted by mysterious events. and Sherlock special The Abominable Bride. “We’ve also picked up Liverpool Film Office manager Lynn Saunders says a huge some international projects such as Galavant [ABC] and The White amount of planning went into the nine-day shoot in the city, which Princess [Starz]. Outside drama, we have The Crystal Maze coming, involved 1,100 cast, crew and extras. “Achieving such a smooth operwhich is exciting.” ation was realised with the support of numerous council Moore says the fact that projects are choosing to be anchored departments, local infrastructure companies and support delivery at The Bottle Yard is also good news for the area’s locations: “We agencies, as well as our very patient neighbours,” she adds. have some excellent locations, both in the city and the surrounding All of the above only tells part of the story of the richness of the area. Georgian and Victorian is easy to do here and there’s a real offering in the UK’s nations and regions. Like Liverpool, Birmingdiversity of locations, from modern urban in the city to period propham is now proving a draw because of its eclectic architecture, erties outside it.” which ranges from Victorian to modern via industrial heritage. In In the case of The White Princess, the team was able to find dozthe last year, it has played host to Steven Spielberg’s new film Ready ens of great period buildings in Gloucestershire, Wales and Player One, a dystopian thriller. Also seen in the city were CBS Wiltshire, all within easy reach of the M4 and M5 motorways. And Films’ The Long Walk, which used part of Birmingham city centre a number of Bristol’s historic sites are regularly used as backdrops to recreate Polish capital Warsaw; and The Girl With All The Gifts to a range of films and TV series; Christopher Menaul’s 2017 war(2016), a post-apocalyptic movie time film, Another Mother’s Son, thriller that used Birmingham to for example, recreated Jersey’s St HELEN FLINT double for parts of central Helier harbour at Bristol’s Princes London. Wharf. On top of all this, producers In the northwest of England, that are interested in the UK’s hisManchester has long rivalled Lontoric and cultural heritage for don as a centre of excellence for period-drama backdrops can talk TV drama — a status enhanced by to English Heritage and The the creation of Salford’s Media National Trust. Other ideas can City. But Liverpool has also rallied also be garnered from Creative in recent years, becoming a go-to England, the organisational glue location for producers from both that binds England’s creative sides of the Atlantic. industries together (it has a ScotFor thriller The Five, Red Protish counterpart, Creative duction Company director Nicola Scotland). Creative England has a Shindler says the city and its surdatabase of crew, locations and rounding area “became an production companies that is updated all the time. In January, for important part of the tone and feel of the show and, logistically, was example, it joined forces with the New Forest District Council to a great place to shoot”. launch an initiative to drive film and TV production to the beautiLiverpool has excelled as a location for doubling. TV shows ful stretch of southern England. Peaky Blinders and Close To The Enemy have both used the city to Creative England has already added 50 new locations from the replicate period London. In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, New Forest to its national database and sent details to 3,500 indusStephen Poliakoff, the writer of the latter, said: “So much in London try professionals. Hayley Armstrong, Creative England production has been modernised inside or it is impossible to film. I have filmed liaison manager for the south-east and east of England, says: “The in Liverpool before and it’s a wonderful city for filming because it New Forest has a huge amount to offer with its diverse range of locahas so many unspoilt interiors.” tions and film-friendly district council. We hope that, by identifying The show’s producer Helen Flint agrees, adding that the lack of the skills of crew and companies working in the area and encouragspace in London is a key reason producers go elsewhere: “In Loning them to register on our database, we can bring some large-scale don, we don't have empty buildings we can use easily for sets,” she productions here within the coming months.” says, “so, as an industry, we are constantly searching for places outThe counties of England also boast an excellent network of local side the capital.” film offices, which open up fantastic locations in less well-trodden Perhaps even more remarkable is the way Liverpool has spots. For example, Jenny Butler, marketing services manager at emerged as a popular location for producers wanting to recreate VisitWiltshire, says her county’s key attractions include Stonehenge, period New York. In 2011, Marvel used Stanley Dock in Captain Salisbury and its cathedral, grand country estates Longleat, StourAmerica and, more recently, 2016's Florence Foster Jenkins and head, and Bowood, market towns and breathtaking countryside Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them visited the city. — almost half of the county is designated an Area of Outstanding On the latter production, set in 1920s New York, Liverpool was Natural Beauty. the only location outside of Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden. The In terms of productions, she adds: “Transformers: The Last Cunard Building doubled for the empty department store in which Knight filmed in Wiltshire in 2016. This was shot in part at the ‘real’ Newt Scamander and his friends locate two of his missing beasts.

“In London, we don't have empty buildings we can use easily for sets so, as an industry, we are constantly searching for places outside the capital”

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Stonehenge and in part at a highly convincing replica nearby. The White Princess, the eight-part TV series based on the historical novel by Philippa Gregory, filmed in part in Bradford on Avon.” In the eastern county of Suffolk, confidence about it’s ability to attract production work saw the launch of Screen Suffolk in December. It is still early days, says managing director Karen Everett, but she cites a number of factors working in the county’s favour: “One of the main attractions is that we have devolved powers from the district and county councils to issue permits and licences for filming. We are the UK’s only countywide ‘one-stop’ film service, from initial enquiry through to crew sourcing and permitting. Our aim is to make Suffolk the most film-friendly county in the UK.” In terms of Suffolk’s locations, Everett adds: “You’ll find the expected picturesque villages, historic buildings and windswept beaches. But you’ll also find the unexpected. There are urban streetscapes, dockyards, estuaries, derelict buildings and airfields, all within easy reach of London.” Especially interesting is Bentwaters Park, a family-owned business comprising an ex-US Air Force airfield and farmland, just a two-hour drive from London. “It’s a well maintained and efficiently run site with a great diversity of buildings to let, from individual

serviced offices to large industrial warehouses,” Everett says. “The airfield offers a superb location for film and TV, with 24-hour security and many on-site resources and amenities.” Meanwhile, down in the southeastern county of Kent, film officer Gabrielle Lindemann says: “The key attraction in Kent is the sheer variety of locations, including 350 miles of varied coastline close to London.” The big coup for Kent has been Kudos’ TV drama The Tunnel. “They have just returned for series three,” Lindemann says. “For each visit, they are based in the county for just over six months, with a filming schedule of roughly three months. This not only brings significant inward investment into Kent, but it also provides local crews and facilities with employment close to home. The series is prestigious and so helps to promote Kent as a base, as well as a travel destination. It also gives us the opportunity to promote the grittier, modern face of the county, which shows we have more than pretty countryside and quaint houses.” Lindemann says the work fluctuates in terms of numbers and project types. “However, over the last five to six years, the trend has definitely gone up — largely due, we believe, to the tax credits for high-end TV.”

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MAKING A SCENE XXXXXXXXXXX MCMAFIA

James Norton as Alex Goodman, attending a funeral in McMafia

CRIME GOES GLOBAL McMafia is a modern crime story, which means it’s global in scale, and in the locations it uses. But London plays a key role in the eight-part TV drama. Andy Fry reports

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ILMING wrapped back in March 2017 on McMafia, an eight-part event drama inspired by Misha Glenny’s best-selling book and created by Hossein Amini (Drive, 2011) and James Watkins (The Woman In Black, 2012). Co-produced by BBC, AMC and Cuba Pictures, in association with Twickenham Studios, the big-budget show is set against a sweeping international backdrop and involved extensive location shoots in London, Croatia and beyond. The plot of McMafia centres on Alex Goodman (James Norton), the Englandraised son of Russian exiles with a mafia history. Alex has spent his life trying to

escape the shadow of that criminal past. But when his family’s past murderously returns to threaten them, he is drawn deeper into the criminal world. Global in scale and forensic in detail, what starts as a story of survival and revenge becomes an epic tale of a man’s struggle against the lures of corruption in the modern world. As the story unfolds, McMafia reveals a web of illicit connections that join up money launderers in Dubai to cyber criminals in India, black marketers in Zagreb to narcos in Colombia, Russian oligarchs in London to Bedouin smugglers in the Negev desert. Speaking to Location International about the appeal of the project, the show’s co-creator Hossein Amini says:

“The gangster genre is something I’ve always been fascinated by and I felt like, since the end of the Nineties, it was really about the death of the genre – and even with The Sopranos, it was about how the Italian mob has run out of options. But when I read this book it felt like it was all being reborn and it’s being reborn on a huge global scale. Suddenly you’ve got the cartels and the triads and different kingdoms all kind of in competition and collaboration. It felt like this extraordinary vast canvas but with all the things about gangster movies and series that I loved.” For Amini, the moral ambiguity of the characters added to the attraction. “We have a hero and villain, but in the course

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of the eight episodes you’re really not sure which is which. With these criminals, there’s greed but there’s also protecting family, pride and a lot of motives that we all have which is what I think makes that genre so accessible.” Glenny, the author of the source material, says that Amini’s adaptation does a great job of bringing out “the love of homeland and displaced identity. Alex’s father Alexei is the exile expelled from his homeland. He can never reconcile himself to that and sort of plays it out through his son.” In Glenny’s opinion, Amini has also added a personal touch that transcends his book: “What Hoss [Amini] has done, because you don’t really get this from my book, is make [the subject] more accessible, more understandable through personalisation and through the creation of the story between the two families, one in London and one in Moscow who are, Game Of Thrones-like, playing out this imperial struggle in different parts of the world. The other thing I think Hoss has done is get across the transactional nature of it. So organised crime is not just about family, it’s about shifting alliances. There’s a gangster in Prague who we think is on one side, but he’s actually on the other side and that is how it really is in the real world.” The international jet-setting nature of the story meant it was important to reflect this in the choice of locations. “We have filmed extensively abroad, with the second unit also jetting around shooting establishing footage across a number of countries from Russia to Egypt,” says location manager James Player. “The majority of filming actually took place in Croatia, which doubled as a number of other European locations. We also filmed in India for a couple of weeks before Christmas [2016] and are currently finalising a shoot window in the Middle East too.” Alongside Croatia, London also formed a large portion of the shoot, says Player, who was supervising location manager for the UK leg. Commenting on this part of the production he underlines its complexity: “The biggest challenge was the sheer number of locations. By the end of the shoot we had shot in around 75 different places in and around London alone, each with their own challenges. The second and third week of the shoot saw us filming in at least two locations per day combined with 10 consecutive

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unit-base moves overnight. The sheer logistics of vehicle movements, parking and security have been as tricky as finding the locations. We often found ourselves shooting in one or two places, while prep was taking place in another couple and strike teams in another… so on any given day my team could be looking after five or six places at a time. The nature of the story meant that the smartest parts of London were used. “The show revolves around a very wealthy Russian family living in the city, so all of the locations had to be amazing, highend venues. As a result, the UK side of the story is predominantly set around [wealthy] Central London — mostly Mayfair, Kensington and Knightsbridge.” With this in mind, Player says: “We found ourselves approaching luxury

MISHA GLENNY

“There’s a gangster in Prague who we think is on one side, but he’s actually on the other side and that is how it really is in the real world” hotels, restaurants and private residences that perhaps ordinarily would not be so keen to be involved in filming. However when we explained the scale and ambition of the show they were excited to get behind the project. This gave us a great platform to access places rarely seen on television.” According to Player, up-market venues like The Dorchester and The Langham hotels “couldn’t have been more accommodating, while logistically challenging locations including Heathrow Airport and [cross-channel rail service] Eurostar were excited to be involved too. Often in international productions London is the start or end point of the story, and with McMafia, it has been important for London to look as incredible on screen as

everywhere else.” Given current global concerns over security, one would imagine that shooting at a major international airport like Heathrow would be at least a challenge, but the process was straightforward. “There are obviously a number of significant rules and regulations that must be followed, but with careful planning it enabled our shoot day to go smoothly and get some fantastic looking footage,” Player says, praising the team of Rachel Betts who looks after filming at the airport’s five terminals. “The airport itself looks spectacular in its own right, with the architecture of Terminal 2 and Terminal 5 really standing out. Visually there was no question that Heathrow would be picked over any alternative.” He added: “Terminal 2 was used for all of the scenes, with set-ups taking place both air-side and land-side and both day and night. We used everything from the exterior walkways to the arrivals hall, boarding gate, car-hire desks and the main departures terminal floor. The scale and architecture of Terminal 2 really helped add to the high-end feel of the show and give the authenticity that you simply can’t get by ‘cheating’ an airport location elsewhere.” With the show set in such opulent surroundings, it meant that nothing other than the smartest locations would suffice for any scene. In theory, this sounds like it could have quickly turned into a very expensive exercise. But Player says that, ironically, money wasn’t ever a deal-breaker. “In Mayfair, venues simply didn’t need the income and were more worried about the inconvenience. So we relied on getting them excited about the show and the high-end ethos of the production. Then they were more on board with lending their properties to us, knowing that we would shoot them to look fantastic, which in some cases was worth more to them than the money.” Player says the trickiest set-up of the whole UK shoot was in fact the opening scene of the series, which takes place at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A). “The scene introduces Alex and his family at a black-tie charity ball. Due to the museum being open to the public during the day we had a window from 18.00, when they closed, until 10.00 the following morning to set up the whole event, shoot a hugely complex scene and de-rig all before re-opening to the public. The scene needed 250 extras in full ball gowns and tuxedos to be dressed and

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Heathrow Terminal 2: “Visually there was no question that Heathrow would be picked over any alternative”

ready to step onto set without delay, so we hired spaces at the Natural History Museum nearby as a crowd base. Our crowd changing was set up around a dinosaur skeleton in the centre of the room! We pulled our last bits of equipment out of the side door of the V&A at exactly 10.00 as the general public arrived at the front, totally oblivious to the crazy set-up that had been going on overnight.” Player says that this was just “a single day of what became a crazy week of shooting huge locations outside of opening hours. In consecutive nights we shot at The Sky Garden, V&A, British Museum and The Dorchester hotel. Each one had to be worked around the normal use of the building, so we got used to working crazy hours through the night and quickly disappearing without a trace by morning.” The UK leg of the shoot totalled 59 days over an 11-week period from January to the beginning of April, every day of which was filmed on location in and around London. “The closest we got to a studio came when we settled at [country house just outside London] Langleybury House for two weeks, which was extensively dressed to double as a luxury Knightsbridge apartment,” Player

says. “Almost every other shoot day used real locations rather than cheating blank spaces and dressing them to fit the scene. With this in mind, all our restaurant scenes were actual restaurants, and hotels were actual hotels — to give the show a real sense of authenticity.” Another key challenge was the overlapping of filming blocks. “The first block of the shoot in Croatia and India shot from October to Christmas, with the London shoot starting in early January 2017. All eight episodes are directed by James Watkins, which meant that a lot of work had to be done very early on before he and the rest of the crew left to shoot abroad. Scouting for London started as early as July to ensure that James and our production designer Richard Bullock had a chance to visit and approve as many London locations as possible before they left the country. This meant that inevitably there were some outstanding locations that had to be approved by photos alone, or by Richard heading back to London to recce with myself and then report back to Croatia.” Player says the first day back in London with director Watkins was straight into the first day of technical recces, often in places he had never been to himself. “We began shooting the following week, so

the turnaround for director, camera and lighting requests was incredibly tight and meant that my whole team were flat-out from the word go trying to get these new details approved at the last minute, while still sourcing the remaining locations. We’ve relied heavily on Westminster Council and the Metropolitan Police being patient while finalising details right up to the 11th hour, so their support has been invaluable.” Player says the above factors made the project challenging at times. “But we have come towards the end of the London block with some amazing footage and hopefully opened a door into a high-end world of the city that isn’t ordinarily seen on TV.” Nick Marston, CEO, Cuba Pictures, is an executive producer on the project. He says: “We wanted to make a show that can stand out from the crowd for its originality, character depth and contemporary resonance. Luckily, Hossein Amini, James Watkins and the top-class writing team, inspired by Misha Glenny’s ground-breaking book, have delivered scripts of the first order. With James Watkins directing the whole series and James Norton heading a perfect cast, we couldn’t be in better hands to realise the immense promise of this show.”

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LOCATION IN PICTURES UNITED-KINGDOM

LOCATION INTERNATIONAL HAS TEAMED UP WITH FILM AND TOURIST OFFICES, LOCATION SCOUTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS TO BRING YOU IMAGES OF STUNNING LOCATIONS AROUND THE UK. SOME ARE WELL-USED BY FILM CREWS, OTHERS ARE STILL TO BE MADE FAMOUS ON THE BIG OR SMALL SCREEN

ST GEORGE’S HALL, LIVERPOOL Regarded as one of the finest examples of neoclassical architecture in the world, St George’s Hall has been a key feature of the city of Liverpool since it was built in the early 1800s. Hosting many different functions over the years, including Crown and Civil Courts until the 1980s, the building contains a wealth of features that are of interest to filmmakers, including: the Great Hall with its vaulted ceiling, a Minton tiled floor, a massive pipe organ, two ballrooms, a concert room, catacombs, prison cells and two courts. Films that shot here include: Nowhere Boy (2009), In The Name Of The Father (1993) and Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them (2016). TV series include: Peaky Blinders (2013-) and Witness For The Prosecution (2016). (Photo, courtesy Culture Liverpool)

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INVERNESS CASTLE TOWER, THE SCOTTISH HIGHLANDS This view is from Inverness Castle across the River Ness to the city of Inverness, the capital of the Highlands. A castle has stood on this site since 1057 — the current castle was built in 1836. The city is the gateway to the wider Highland area, with iconic locations including: Glen Affric, a beautiful valley area used as a location for Valhalla Rising (2009); and world-famous freshwater lake Loch Ness, recently used for TV miniseries The Loch (2017). Many other TV programmes, commercials and films have shot in Inverness over the years including: Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares (2011), a Haig Club commercial featuring David Beckham (2014) and feature film Edie (2017). (Photo, courtesy Ewen Weatherspoon)

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THE CENTRAL BEACONS, BRECON BEACONS NATIONAL PARK, WALES This picture is taken from Pen y Fan mountain, the highest red sandstone summit in Britain, looking across to another peak, Cribyn. The Brecon Beacons National Park contains some spectacular and diverse landscapes, including waterfalls, caves and wooded gorges. The landscape is scattered with prehistoric monuments, Roman remains, medieval castles, sweeping grassy uplands, wide-open vistas and rocky outcrops. Films and television dramas that have used locations in the park include: Doctor Who (1963-), King Arthur (2004), The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy (2005), Stardust (2007), Submarine (2010), Killer Elite (2011), Wrath Of The Titans (2012), The Dark Knight Rises (2012), The Bastard Executioner (2015) and Da Vinci’s Demons (2013-2015). (Photo, courtesy Crown copyright (2017) Visit Wales)

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CALTON HILL, EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND Calton Hill, in the heart of the city of Edinburgh, is beyond the east end of Princes Street and is included in the city's UNESCO World Heritage Site. From here there is an outstanding view of the skyline and the unfinished monument, originally called the National Monument, which was initiated in 1816, a year after Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo. It was intended to be a replica of the Parthenon in Athens, as a memorial to those who had died in the Napoleonic Wars. Productions to have made use of this location include: Case Histories (2011-), One Day ( 2011), Sunshine On Leith (2013), The Railway Man (2013) and Churchill (2017). (Photo, courtesy Simon Williams)

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FEATURE FOCUS ON CHINA

TIME TO BREAK DOWN THE WALL The chairman of China’s Dalian Wanda Group says the best way for Hollywood to take a share of China’s growing film industry is to team with Chinese companies. Wanda Studios and Wanda’s Qingdao Movie Metropolis aim to help for that to happen

Matt Damon in The Great Wall. Photo: Legendary Entertainment

THE LACK of critical success in the US for The Great Wall, the biggest-ever cinema coproduction between China and Hollywood, dampened what was otherwise a significant event. The 2016 release is from Universal Pictures and Legendary East, the China subsidiary of Burbank-based Legendary Entertainment, which China’s Dalian Wanda Group acquired in early 2016 for $3.5bn. At $150m, the most expensive Chinese film ever made, The Great Wall made $171m at the Chinese box office alone, and doubled that worldwide, albeit with a comparatively poor showing in the US ($45m).

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What was certainly achieved however, was the ultimate goal of so many filmmakers in the West: to co-produce with the Chinese, in China. An action-fantasy movie, The Big Wall has mercenary warrior Matt Damon imprisoned within The Great Wall as it is besieged by marauding beasts. Damon’s character William Garin joins a vast army of elite warriors to confront this seemingly irrepressible force. The film is the first in the English-language from Zhang Yimou —Raise The Red Lantern (1991), Hero (2002), House Of Flying Daggers (2004) — and the biggest ever to be shot entirely on the Chinese mainland. The film was also the first international production to shoot at Wanda’s Qingdao Movie Metropolis — or to be accurate, around the site, which is still under construction — and the first to receive incentives from a fund jointly established by the Qingdao government and Wanda Group. Film and TV projects that shoot at Wanda's Qingdao Movie Metropolis will receive a 40% rebate, co-funded by the Qingdao regional governments and Wanda itself, from a development fund worth $750m and spread over five years.

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While spring and fall bring stunning displays of natural beauty in mild The rebate for each qualifying production will be capped at $18m. weather, winter is generally cold and dry with frosty nights; and sumEligible companies setting up businesses in Qingdao will also enjoy mer, hot and sultry. a 10% tax rebate. Equidistant from both Beijing and Shanghai, Qingdao boasts hisIt is understood that the next Legendary titles to shoot there are toric European and modern Asian architecture, as well as striking Pacific Rim: Uprising (2018) and Godzilla: King Of Monsters (2019). natural scenery. A major seaport, naval base and vital economic cen“Hollywood needs to strengthen collaboration with Chinese comtre in China, it also has a rich history and vibrant tourism industry. panies,” Wanda Group chairman Wang Jianlin says. “You have to The city is home to two of China’s best- known international understand the Chinese market in order to earn profit from that marbrands: Tsingtao Beer; and consumer electronics firm Haier. It is also ket. A lot of American film companies think they understand China; home to the world’s longest sea bridge linking Qingdao and Huanghowever in reality, in my many years of experience talking to Hollydao. Wanda Studios works in close co-operation with the local wood, there’s a significant lack of film professionals who really authorities and is able to obtain permission to close the Jiaozhou Bay understand China.” Bridge on designated days for production shoots. He adds: “It’s not easy to find folks who understand both China In recent years, the city has established the Blue Economic Zone, and the US. The best way to solve this problem is for US companies designed to attract high-tech enterprises. The Zone’s objective is to to increase their collaboration with Chinese companies, whether develop modern infrastructure to support advanced manufacturing through financial deals, production deals, or collaboration on film and to strengthen Qingdao’s position as a regional economic centre. techniques. Collaborating with Chinese companies and filmmakers Qingdao has an international is a very effective way of gaining a airport with direct flights between piece of the Chinese market share.” WANG JIANLIN Qingdao and more than 25 major Wanda Studios and the Movie cities around the world; a direct Metropolis are an $8.2bn commerflight between Los Angeles and cial property investment in Qingdao launches in 2017. Qingdao by its parent company A subway line linking Qingdao Dalian Wanda Group. When it to Huangdao is currently under opens in August 2018, Wanda Stuconstruction and slated for compledios will be the first in China to tion in 2018. Two railway stations offer competitive production serve millions of people every day. incentives and a full suite of servicOn the complex, shuttle services to filmmakers from around the es for production crews and staff operate within the grounds of the world. Joining forces with film and television companies from around Movie Metropolis. the world, the complex will also serve as a gateway to the world’s largThe potential for growth in China is clear. In 2015 its box office est film and TV production destination. grew to $6.5bn, making it the second-largest box office in the world, Pinewood Studios UK is design consultant for Wanda's studios. although this growth slowed in 2016. The country is still likely to Spread across 165.76 hectares, it will feature 30 sound stages, among become the world’s largest box office, however. There are around which will be the world’s largest at 10,000 sq m. And with the comple30,000 screens in China today, but in the next five years, that is tion of Phase II, there will be a total of 45 stages. It will house the expected to grow to 50,000 with annual growth at around 4,700 largest exterior water tank in China and also the country’s most screens — the highest in the world. There is currently one movie advanced temperature-controlled underwater stage. screen per 75,000 people in this country of 1.3 billion citizens; to reach There is also an 89.5 hectare backlot that can accommodate pretty saturation point as in the US, where there is one screen per 8,000 much any kind of built-to-order set, and plans for a state-of-the art people, China will need another 145,000 screens. advanced post-production centre. “I predict that for the next 10 years, China’s box office will see a For overseas producers who fear the piracy that has dogged Chi15% growth rate per year,” Wang says. “Based on this projection, by na’s industry for so long Wanda says that “world-class security services 2026 China’s box office will reach $30bn, accounting for 40- 50% of will ensure every production remains confidential and fully protectthe global market share.” ed”. It is applying cutting-edge technology to “future-proof its IT infrastructure, building a system that can repel any cyber attack and guard against security breaches”. All office communication and IT systems meet or exceed MPAA standards, Wanda claims. CHINESE PRODUCTION “The Movie Metropolis will be the most advanced movie studios RESTRICTIONS with the largest investment in the world,” Wang says. “Wanda has invited the world’s leading companies and talent to develop this INTERNATIONAL filmmakers are aware of the many production and distribution restrictions in China. Wanda project.” Studios’ concierge services aim to help visiting crews to The complex is built on the coastal city of Qingdao, in northeast navigate China’s production landscape — from visa application China. Its locations include a busy port set in a garden city surrounded for the entire cast and crew, to overseas payments and fund transfers, as well as legal support for contracts. by mountains, with rivers, fertile wetlands and reservoirs. Qingdao has a continental climate with four distinct seasons.

“Wanda has invited the world’s leading companies and talent to develop this project”

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FEATURE FOCUS ON GEORGIA

SOUTHERN

HOSPITALITY People working in the film industry in Georgia are unanimous that it is the state’s production tax incentive scheme that is behind the boom in production in recent years. But there are other things that draw filmmakers to the state. Julian Newby reports Sunset at Tybee Island, Georgia, which doubles for the Texas coastline in the movie Galveston

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IN AUGUST 2016, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal announced that the 245 feature film and television productions shot in the state that year generated an economic impact of over $7bn — $1bn up on the previous year and representing $2.02bn in direct spending. “Georgia’s film industry provides a significant impact on our state’s economy, employing thousands of Georgians while developing infrastructure and boosting small businesses,” Deal said at the time. “The film industry has created a home in Georgia and I am committed to retaining this relationship by constructing a strong, film-ready workforce that will continue to help the industry thrive.” It’s widely agreed that a big contributor to this success is the state’s production tax incentive scheme. Qualifying productions receive a 20% tax credit, plus and additional 10% credit for embedding a Georgia promotional logo in the production’s title or credits. The incentives clearly attract productions that might well have shot elsewhere — for example the 2018 release Galveston. In this crime thriller directed by the actor Mélanie Laurent, a 40-year-old New Orleans hitman, Roy Cady (Ben Foster), has been diagnosed with lung cancer. Before the disease takes over his life, he has to deal with his mobster boss who is out to kill him. Cady goes on the run after having rescued a teenage hooker Raquel (Elle Fanning) and her young sister Tiffany (Lili Reinhart) who go with him to Galveston where he plans his revenge. “The Galveston production team was interested in filming their movie in Georgia, even though it is set in Texas, because of the Georgia Tax credit,” says Beth Nelson, executive director of the Savannah Area Film Office. “The next step was to determine if Georgia locations could double as Texas. Our office was contacted in March 2016 about the project. We received the script, scouted locations, and put

together a package of location photos. The producers loved the photographs and contacted us to arrange a scout.” Three months later the production team visited Savannah, scouted locations with Nelson and her staff, and decided that the area had the right look for the project. “They were also drawn to Savannah because of the Savannah Entertainment Production Incentive. The incentive provides an additional 10% rebate on qualified spend in the Savannah area, which is above the 30% tax credit offered by the state of Georgia,” Nelson says. Laura Bryant, a locations manager who has been working in the Savannah area for over 25 years, says that “85%” of the Galveston team’s decision to shoot in the Savannah area was down to incentives. “But we’re right on the coast, we have a beach, and Galveston needed a beach,” Bryant says. “And the only difference between Galveston’s beach and ours is the colour of the water and you can change that with the lens.” “After the decision was made to come to Savannah we provided assistance to the producers as they made their initial plans,” Nelson says. “We connected them with local crew, vendors and office space and also provided information on filming guidelines and the permitting process. We hosted a production meeting in our boardroom, we answered many questions and provided contact information for local resources. We also made set visits during production to ensure that shooting went smoothly.” The beach used in the film is on Tybee Island, some 18 miles from the city of Savannah — also known as Savannah Beach and “a good match for Galveston”, according to Nelson. Other locations include an old dry-cleaning establishment. “It’s so sweet and so old and so full of texture, and it looks like it hasn’t been touched in 25 years,” Bryant says. “There is a scene where Roy is in this dry-cleaners, meets with his boss Stan, and there’s a confrontation and he tries to escape. His escape is through this dry cleaners and laundry and then he finally gets out into the road, and leaves in a car.” The building was a revelation to the location manager. “I’ve been working here for 25 years and none of the scripts I’ve worked on have called for a dry cleaners. I was so excited when we were able to shoot in a location that I’ve never shot in. It’s

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incentive for film production is one important ingredient in the called Best Cleaners and they’ve been around probably 70 or 80 recipe for the state’s success in the film industry, a recipe that years. They’ve got five locations, but this is the hub.” includes investments of more than $1bn of private capital into Geor“Savannah has a wide variety of locations — a large historic disgia’s current film production facilities and infrastructure. In fact, it’s trict, beaches, rural farmland, swamps and a great variety of this kind of private capital investment that funded the construction architectural styles.” Nelson says. “In Savannah you can go back in of the best-in-class stages and facilities at Pinewood Atlanta Studios, time and shoot a period piece, or find a very contemporary look. We which are used by the top production companies in the world that can double as many locations — Florida, New Orleans, New York are incentivised by Georgia’s tax credit.” City, a European city, southeast Asia, even Los Angeles. We also stay Opened in 2014, PAS is best-known right now for hosting entergreen year-round.” tainment blockbusters including Marvel’s Captain America: Civil Bryant adds: “The only thing we’re lacking in Savannah is mounWar (2016), and Sony’s Passengers tains. We have great waterways, we (2016). “Of course we see all of our have the beach, we have urban and LAURA BRYANT productions as exceptional in their historic. The governments are own ways,” Patterson says. “That really nice to work with around said, it’s hard to find an action here, city and federal. It’s not a sequence that’s more entertaining problem for a producer to say ‘I — and exceptional — than the airwant that, and that and that!’.” port battle in Captain America, Drive 250 miles west and you which was shot on our two-acre will reach another Georgia filming green-screen pad.” hub — Atlanta. The state capital April 2015 saw the opening of has seen a rapid growth in the Eagle Rock Studios Atlanta, whose number of production spaces, crefirst feature film was 2016’s Mothated to satisfy the demand caused er’s Day, directed by Garry by the incentives available across Marshall and starring Jennifer the state. Aniston, Timothy Olyphant and Frank Patterson, president of Julia Roberts. Right now, however, Pinewood Atlanta Studios (PAS), TV series are filling the order books, according to vice-president of says it’s more than just incentives that attract productions to the studio operations Beth Talbert. Series shot there include Sony origistate. “I’m most excited about how uniquely positioned Georgia is nal series Powers for the PlayStation Network; Greenleaf for the to take advantage of the changing modes of production and distriOprah Winfrey network; and Ozark, for Netflix. At press time Talbution of entertainment content,” Patterson says. “Atlanta is home bert was “sorting out all the pilots that have come here and waiting to world-class territorial assets and talent in higher education, innoto see if anybody bites”. vation and media — all of which are coming together to position the Eagle Rock staff speak proudly of the Studios being the biggest city as something between Los Angeles and Silicon Valley.” in the US to be built all under one roof, with 465,000 sq ft of space. But the incentives play their part too. “The State of Georgia has The structure even includes indoor base camp areas and “silent air” been consistently ranked as one of the best states in the US for doing which means the Studios are fully operational year-round, even durbusiness, a reputation that is the result of smart legislation — including Georgia’s hot and humid summer season. ing tax incentives — fiscal soundness, workforce and transportation One of Atlanta’s youngest studios is situated in the southeast infrastructure, and global access,” Patterson says. “Georgia’s tax

“The only thing we’re lacking in Savannah is mountains. We have great waterways, we have the beach, we have urban and historic”

Unimaginable Scenery

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-ˆÌÕ>Ìi`“ˆ˜ÕÌiÃvÀœ“Ƃ̏>˜Ì>½Ã“œÃÌVÀi>̈Ûi>˜`>vyÕi˜Ì communities, Blackhall Studios is purpose-built for the most demanding blockbuster movie and television productions.

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FEATURE FOCUS ON GEORGIA

“As industry veterans, we knew first-hand that there was a masof the city. Opened at the start of 2017, the $70m Blackhall Studios sive deficit for purpose-built film and television infrastructure in includes nine sound stages totalling 200,000 sq ft. The first phase the Atlanta market,” says Ed Richardson, who co-founded the Stuof the complex consists of seven 20,000-sq ft stages, one dios with Livesay and John Rooker, who first acquired the Shannon 30,000-square-foot stage and one 40,000-sq ft stage. The developMall site. “Our team's backgrounds range from producers, producment also includes a 40,000-sq ft office building, bringing the tion designers and transportation co-ordinators to construction, studio’s total to nearly 400,000 sq ft. development and studio executives. Our lives in the arts have taken “We are an international purpose-built studio, so we are preeach of us around the world. Now, thanks to the steadfast support pared to host productions from all over the world,” says chairman of Georgia Governor Nathan Deal and the Georgia General AssemRyan Millsap. “Our studio is a major motion picture studio and is bly, we each find ourselves with built from the ground up to make amazing opportunities in Georgia, production easy for large budget ED RICHARDSON at the intersection of the arts and films.” Rumours, not confirmed by large-scale industry. The most Millsap at press time, had Blackexciting part of bringing Georgia’s hall Studios hosting Michael booming film industry to Union Dougherty’s Godzilla: King Of The City is that the productions filming Monsters (2019) as its first feature. at Atlanta Metro Studios have also “Everyone we talk to in Hollywood become customers of Union City’s has Georgia on their radar as a hotels, restaurants, gas stations, prime shooting location and all of banks and retail stores, all within the majors are allocating producwalking distance of the studio’s tions to Georgia,” he says. front door. The community proAnother newcomer to the vides support, and the productions state is Atlanta Metro Studios, are spurring further growth for established in 2016 on the site of our local businesses.” the 90-acre Shannon Mall in Union City, and already the StudiRichardson adds: “Our state’s os are at capacity. “Just like all of commitment to film education through the Georgia Film Academy our infrastructure compadres in Georgia, we are blessed to be comis also a huge step forward in our collective ability to consistently pletely booked with the world’s greatest content creators,” says grow the state’s already robust skilled labour base. Atlanta Metro co-founder and managing partner Brian Livesay. “Our goal for the Studios is proud to join the long list of amenities that keeps Georgia redevelopment was multi-faceted. First, address the deficit of largeon the map for producers and content creators the world over. Atlanscale, purpose-built studio facilities in Georgia’s film infrastructure ta Metro Studios has a valuable neighbour just five minutes down by building sound stages, production offices and flex space in a the road, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. We are secure campus environment. Second, and possibly the more excitall working together to create a fully sustainable entertainment ecoing opportunity, create a film community inside an existing system. For Georgians, the days of leaving home to find consistent community. In partnership with Union City we have sparked ecowork in film are gone.” nomic development in South Fulton and are focusing a spotlight on These newly established studios in Georgia are, in part, a the purpose-built film corridor that’s fast emerging on Atlanta’s response to the demand created by the state’s production incenbooming south side.”

“We are all working together to create a fully sustainable entertainment ecosystem. For Georgians, the days of leaving home to find consistent work in film are gone”

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GEORGIA’S LARGEST PURPOSE-BUILT STUDI0 18 stages ranging from 15,000 sq ft to 40,000 sq ft Full on-site service offering Talk to us:

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FEATURE FOCUS ON GEORGIA

Jennifer Aniston and Kate Hudson in Mother’s Day

tives. But, not to be forgotten, there is a long history of filmmaking here too. Riverwood Studios, operating under the name Raleigh Studios – Atlanta, has been in the city since 1989, established by Joe and Paul Lombardi — whose nephew Scott Tigchelaar is now president there. “Joe started working in Los Angeles in special effects in 1947, and passed away in 1997 shortly after winning a lifetime achievement award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). Paul grew up in Hollywood, and continues to run Full Scale Effects, which is based there,” Tigchelaar says. “They originally came to Georgia in the late Eighties to build the studio, because at the time Georgia was a popular destination for filming. Production companies looking for a cheaper alternative to LA and New York were attracted to Georgia, and it soon ranked third in the nation for production activity. That was pre-incentives, of course.” Raleigh has been home to many high-profile films, including Fried Green Tomatoes (1991), The War (1994), Sweet Home Alabama (2002) and Killers (2010). “Since 2011, it has been completely leased by AMC’s hit cable series The Walking Dead, which in addition to the economic benefits of the annual production spend, has created an international tourist destination out of the adjacent town of Senoia, Georgia, and its surrounding area,” Tigchelaar says. “Senoia has long served as a real-life backlot for our studio, and has been used extensively as a location by The Walking Dead.” Of the tax incentive programme that is fuelling Georgia’s entertainment industry right now, Tigchelaar says: “Without it, we’d have no industry. With the incentive, however, all the other benefits that Georgia offers really put it over the top. Easy access through the biggest and busiest airport in the world, diverse topography and locations, moderate climate, and in terms of infrastructure we’re just exploding. Studios and stages are being built all over, post pro-

duction and gaming is taking off, and crew and production support companies are relocating here.” A younger operation but sufficiently well-established to already have claimed a number of global hits is EUE/Screen Gems Studios. The 10-stage, 33-acre Atlanta studio complex opened in 2010. Ten minutes away from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the Studios has hosted over 30 scripted television shows and feature films in the first seven years, including two movies in the Divergent franchise; Ben Stiller movie The Watch (2012); Robert Zemeckis’ Flight starring Denzel Washington (2012); Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson starrer The Internship (2013); and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Parts I & II (2014, 2015). EUE/Screen Gems Studios is one of the five Georgia studios that joined forces back in March 2015 to form The Georgia Studio and Infrastructure Alliance, which serves as a legislative and educational advocacy group for studio and production support businesses in Georgia's film and television industry, and to encourage education programmes in order to build a wider crew base across the state. The Alliance's original members are Eagle Rock Studios Atlanta, EUE/Screen Gems Studios Atlanta, Mailing Avenue Stageworks, Tyler Perry Studios and Triple Horse Studios. Atlanta Film Works, situated on the Northeast Expressway, is also a part of the Alliance. Kris Bagwell, executive vice-president, EUE/Screen Gems Studios and founder of the Alliance, explains why Screen Gems came to Atlanta: "EUE/Screen Gems and the Cooney family [partners in Screen Gems studios across the US] chose Atlanta because they were looking for a studio adjacent to locations with urban hardscapes — as well as features such as football stadiums, pro-sports venues and museums. They were drawn to the diversity of the talent pool here and access to the largest airport in the world, with hourly flights

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SCOTT TIGCHELAAR

“Studios and stages are being built all over, post production and gaming is taking off and crew and production support companies are relocating here” to Los Angeles.” He adds: "The structure of the incentive programme here was definitely attractive, and the support from legislators an other businesses has been outstanding.” Mailing Avenue Stageworks started out scouting potential urban properties to be used as studios in neighbourhoods with the potential for regeneration, the idea being that well-located buildings in areas with future potential could be used for other purposes if the production industry ever suffered a decline. Mailing Avenue Stagework's first production facility opened in 2012 near Grant Park in downtown Atlanta, with 85,000 square feet of stage space. The new Tyler Perry Studios, a 10-minute drive, both from downtown Atlanta and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, is established on 330 acres of historic land on the decommissioned Fort McPherson Army base. Due to be completed towards the end of 2017, it replaces the original Tyler Perry Studios on Atlanta’s Continental Colony Parkway, which opened in 2008. Much of Perry’s success is down to the Madea comedy films and the character Mabel Madea Simmons, played by Perry. Madea Goes To Jail (2009) made over $95m and Madea’s Witness Protection (2012) over $65m at the box office. Perry has had nine films open with more than $20m and whether film or TV, he has almost total creative control on most of his work — producing, writing, directing and appearing. Triple Horse Studios, in Covington, Atlanta, was founded by Karl Horstmann, formerly of Turner Studios where he was involved in the launch of a number of TV and cable networks. Starting out in commercials, he branched out into documentaries, television series and specials, live events, concerts and motion pictures. Creative director at the Studios is Brian Barnard who also oversees the studios post-production facilities and output. Titles shot at Triple Horse Studios include Ken Carpenter’s One Generation Away (2015); Larry A McLean’s Left Behind: Vanished: Next Generation (2016); and Jon Gunn’s The Case For Christ (2017). No single title can really claim to have put Georgia on the movie map, but 1994’s Forrest Gump and 1997’s Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil played key roles, the latter based on a true Savannah story and shot in the actual places where the real-life action took place. Laura Bryant worked on both and re-visited one of Forrest Gump’s locations for Galveston. “For Galveston we had a beautiful shot of this old drawbridge near the Georgia and South Carolina

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Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch, played by Elizabeth Olsen, in Marvel's Captain America: Civil War. Photo: Zade Rosenthal. ©Marvel 2016

border [Chowan Creek Bridge]. We’d used it in Forrest Gump, so I haven’t used that bridge in at least 23 years. It’s a beautiful old bridge that swings out,” Bryant says. Of the movie generally, her fondest memories were of its star Tom Hanks. “He stayed in character all day long. He did six or seven takes of the scene where he was introduced to his son and the whole crew was crying. He was so believable. It was just a great experience that I remember vividly. I’ve got chills just thinking about it.”

THE GEORGIA FILM ACADEMY THE GEORGIA Film Academy is a collaborative effort of the University System of Georgia and Technical College System of Georgia supporting the workforce requirements of the film and digital entertainment industries. The Academy certifies workforce-ready employees and connects students and prospective employees with employers. The Academy is a collaboration with 10 universities and technical colleges across the state.

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LOCATION INTERNATIONAL HAS TEAMED UP WITH FILM AND TOURIST OFFICES, LOCATION SCOUTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS TO BRING YOU IMAGES OF STUNNING LOCATIONS AROUND THE UK. SOME ARE WELL-USED BY FILM CREWS, OTHERS ARE STILL TO BE MADE FAMOUS ON THE BIG OR SMALL SCREEN

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DOWNTOWN ATLANTA SKYLINE The iconic Varsity midtown restaurant is an Atlanta institution and the world's largest drive-in restaurant. Family-owned and operated since 1928, the Varsity is a pivotal location in the 2006 movie We Are Marshall starring Matthew McConaughey and Matthew Fox. Atlanta today is one of the busiest cities in the world for filming big-budget features, episodic TV shows and commercials. Some recent and films and TV series include: Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013), Hunger Games: Mockingjay I & II (2014-2015), Ant-Man (2015), A Walk In The Woods (2015), The Divergent Series (2014-2016), Passengers (2016), Captain America: Civil War (2016), Hidden Figures (2017), The Fate Of The Furious (2017), Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017); and TV series The Walking Dead (2010-) and Atlanta (2016-). (Photo, courtesy Georgia Department of Economic Development)

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WORMSLOE, ISLE OF HOPE, SAVANNAH This picture shows a 1.5-mile-long picturesque avenue of live oak trees draped with Spanish moss, which leads to the tabby ruins of Wormsloe Plantation, the colonial estate of Noble Jones (1702–1775). Wormsloe's Plantation is the oldest standing structure in Savannah, and is now a State of Georgia Historic Site. The beauty and history of this location has attracted a number of Hollywood films over the years, including Glory (1989), The General’s Daughter, (1999) and The Last Song (2010), as well as numerous TV travel shows, documentaries and commercials. (Photo, courtesy Don Teuton)

1930S FARMHOUSE, BLACK MOUNTAIN ROAD, DAHLONEGA The historic town centre of downtown Dahlonega can provide a spectacular backdrop for location filming. The preserved 1930s farmhouse shown here is nestled in a mountain cove, blanketed in the red, yellow and orange fall foliage, and just minutes from the centre of downtown Dahlonega. This location is still waiting for its big moment on screen. The North Georgia Film Commission can offer information about filming in Dahlonega and the north Georgia mountains. (northgeorgiafilm.org) (Photo, courtesy Jack Anthony)

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SKYLINE OF THE CITY OF SAVANNAH The Savannah area boasts a wealth of locations including an extensive historic district, an evergreen urban forest and timeless coastal and rural settings. Being the first planned city in the US, Savannah has retained its original layout with 22 public squares, brick streets and an architectural timeline dating back to 1733. Savannah’s period locations easily double as 19th-century US or European cities; its marshes and swamps have played as Southeast Asia; and its coastline features numerous accessible beaches. Projects filmed in the Savannah area incliude Glory (1989), Cape Fear (1991), Forrest Gump (1994), Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil (1997), The Legend Of Bagger Vance (2000), Magic Mike XXL (2015), Gifted (2017), Baywatch (2017) and the TV series Underground (2016-). (Photo, courtesy Visit Savannah)

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ALWAYS IN SEASON South Africa's favourable currency, generous incentives, experienced crews and endless supply of gorgeous locations has made it a year-round destination for film and TV producers from across the globe. Marlene Edmunds reports

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A beach front in Durban

THE SUCCESS of Cape Town Film Studios (CTFS), the first custom-built state-of-the-art film studio in Sub-Saharan Africa, which is reportedly fully booked through 2019, has fuelled robust expansion since it launched in 2010. Among the latest add-ons is a double stage with a moveable sound wall, consisting of a 15-metre-high ceiling and a 2.5-tonne door, which allows filming to continue on one side while sets are being prepared on the other side. Recent shoots at CTFS include the film version of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower (2017), the fourth and final season of the Starz drama Black Sails, Fox thriller The Empty Man, Syfy’s dystopian near-future series Blood Drive and season three of Outlander. While South Africa's aim is to use its locations expertise as a major economic driver, the country is also pushing to build up its local film-industry expertise. CTFS has been a kick-starter to those ambitions, creating a domino effect by generating more than 40,000 jobs and pushing local crew

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skills up to global standards. The development of refurbished sites into new studio spaces, such as the new Atlantic Film Studios, is also helping to keep up with the continued demand for filming in Cape Town. And the demand has been strong. Aside from CTFS, Cape Town and the Western Cape are magnets for film and TV productions, among the more recent being TV series The Indian Detective and The Crown. Season two of The Crown was shot at Hermanus Harbour, among other sites in the Western Cape. Cape Town's colonial past and large Indian population meant it was a fit for both India and Canada, both of which are part of the storyline of The Indian Detective, says award-winning writer and producer Frank Spotnitz, chief executive of Paris- and Londonbased Big Light Productions. Spotnitz is executive producer and co-developer (with Smita Bhide) of the series, which stars Russell Peters as a Toronto cop who visits his parent’s homeland in India and becomes embroiled in a murder investigation there.

FRANK SPOTNITZ

“Incredibly, Cape Town passes as both India and Canada. There are colonial buildings and neighbourhoods that, when properly dressed, are extremely convincing as Mumbai” "Incredibly, Cape Town passes quite convincingly as both India and Canada in our story," Spotnitz says. "There are colonial buildings and neighbourhoods that, when properly dressed, are extremely convincing as Mumbai, and there are many modern buildings and streets that easily double for Toronto. Our art department, led by the incredibly talented production designer Robert Van de Coolwijk, built a full-scale, three-story Mumbai slum on stage. It’s an astonishing set, both in its scale and detail, and utterly convincing." It was helpful to the series that South Africa boasts a huge community of actors of Indian descent, Spotnitz adds. The Indian Detective is being co-produced by Big Light with Blue Ice Pictures, Wonder Films and CTV. The series is financed by Blue Ice and the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa. Spotnitz says that Blue Ice president Lance Samuels has decades of experience working with [Blue Ice subsidiary]

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The brainchild behind the eThekwini Film City is South AfriOut of Africa, the South African production company used on the can producer Anant Singh (Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, 2013). show. Samuels also worked with Spotnitz on the Sky 1/Cinemax’s Singh, whose company Videovision Entertainment holds a 50% high-octane drama Strike Back, produced by Left Bank Pictures. stake in CTFS, envisions a sprawling studio complex that will com"Some 60%-70% of what we do with Out of Africa is facilities," plement the Cape Town facility and ratchet up Durban's share of Samuels says. "Our basic formula is that we come and shoot in South South Africa’s film-industry spend. Africa because the crews are extraordinary, as are the financial ben"Currently, Durban has less than a 5% share of the 10bn rand efits, the tax credits and the exchange rates." [$726m] spend in SA,” Singh says. He predicts the new $500m film Samuels adds that Blue Ice looks at each shoot on a project-bycomplex will be a key economic driver for both the city and provproject basis and tries to offer a one-stop shop: "We essentially get ince: "We hope to secure at least 10%-15% of the spend in the film involved in any area of production and facilities that a co-producer industry in our first two years of operation.” He estimates that an or producer might need to get their project made, including experinitial 9,000 jobs will be created during the construction phase and tise in production, financial advice or facilities support.” He adds another 4,000 on completion. that, in the case of The Indian Like CTFS, the new Durban Detective, “we had a major creaANTOINETTE MONTY complex will start off with three tive force in Frank Spotnitz as the sound stages. "As we have a fair showrunner, so the partnership tract of land, we will expand the was quite easy. We provided some backlot as we progress,” Singh says. of the financing and facilities “The complex will also include support." workshops, post-production and Blue Ice is also involved in pasother technical facilities.” Singh is sion project Madiba, a landmark also hoping to set up a film school six-part series about the life of Nelon the site, as well to provide son Mandela. "The creative intern and other practical process was different,” Samuels training. says. “We developed Madiba from Durban, the capital of the ‘garthe very beginning and balancing den’ province of KwaZulu-Natal, is the collective history of a man like "a gateway to a multitude of locaNelson Mandela was quite a tions, from pristine beaches to challenge.” forests, mountains and game Samuels is among those who reserves with ‘the big five’ [lion, believe that the Department of elephant, buffalo, leopard and rhinoceros], all within two hours of Trade and Industry (DTI) incentives, which range from 20% on the site of the new film hub”, Singh adds. qualified location shooting expenses to 25% on post production, is There are high hopes for the eThekwini Film City. "We're hophelping to build a new industry in South Africa. “When the DTI was ing construction will start in the next 12 months and expect the new brought in, the industry grew incrementally, so it was a huge benefit studio to have a dramatic impact on the growth of the local indusand continues to be one,” he adds. try," says Antoinette Monty, head of the Durban Film Office. While favourable exchange rates have also fuelled growth, SamLaunched in 2003, the Durban Film Office has been largely uels believes that, even if the rates change, the good weather, the responsible for repositioning Durban from a sleepy wannabe to a locations, the crews, and the ease and comfort that South Africa popular filming destination. Durban locations, which range from offers will continue to bring in international business. Indian temples to Art Deco architecture, have been used in recent Genevieve Hofmeyr, managing director and producer of Moonshoots, including 2016's The Journey Is The Destination, The Odyslighting Films (The Crown; Resident Evil: The Final Chapter) sey and The Brothers Grimsby. Monty adds: "Having the largest agrees: "The production incentive was introduced in 2004, at which Indian population outside of India, Durban is also very popular for point there were approximately three to four international producits rich Indian culture, which includes architecture, markets and tions a year in South Africa. Since then, the number has been more than 40 Hindu temples.” increasing consistently. This year, there are in excess of 15 internaIt is not just Durban, but the entire province of KwaZulu-Natal tional productions in Cape Town alone. This growth is largely due that will benefit from the new film complex. The KwaZulu-Natal to the incentives." Film Commission was launched some three years ago with the aim The enormous success of CTFS has spurred ambitious plans in of providing support at both skills level and financially to up-andSouth Africa to build not one but two additional film hubs: the coming filmmakers. The organisation is still in a developmental eThekwini (the isiZulu name for Durban) Film City and Studio stage but has ambitions to grow the province’s film industry by pullJoburg in Johannesburg. "For us, the more purpose-built film stages ing in international productions and supporting the local industry. there are, the better," Hofmeyr says. "Cape Town Film Studios have Through its use of incentives, it has already attracted international been full since they were built, so we tend to use converted wareinterest from the US, Nigeria, India and Italy, among other territohouse space. New facilities in Durban and Joburg will certainly be ries, with recent shoots in KwaZulu-Natal including Roots. helpful."

“Having the largest Indian population outside of India, Durban is also very popular for its rich Indian culture, which includes architecture, markets and more than 40 Hindu temples”

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Creative Space Media provides military-grade locations to productions

MONIQUE GRIFFITHS

“As the largest city in South Africa, we’re home to a diverse international population. That means there’s always something on offer that speaks to residents of the world when they visit Johannesburg” Carol Coetzee, CEO of the KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission, says her region is rich in great locations. “The local municipalities are increasingly seeing the value in film production and assist wherever possible to secure productions," she adds. To date, the commission has funded 19 fully completed projects that were shot in the province, and invested heavily in 78 development projects. One of the biggest hits was the South African box-office comedy hit Keeping Up With The Kandasamys, which was co-funded by the commission. In terms of KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission-funded productions, most of the crew base is local, Coetzee says. As a condition of funding, the commission not only requires filmmakers to spend 70% of their production budget in the region but also insists that a spe-

cific percentage of the crew be local and come from a previously disadvantaged sector of the economy. The capital of Gauteng province and the industrial driver of South Africa, Johannesburg is currently making plans for Studio Joburg, which is to be based at the Expo Centre Johannesburg. The film complex, which will consist of 50,000 sq m of indoor space and 100,000 sq m of outdoor space, will also offer themed precincts, such as New York, London and Paris. These will include restaurants typical of these cities, along with replicas of major landmarks, such as the Eiffel Tower and London's Tower Bridge. Johannesburg is home to some 70% of South Africa’s production industry, national broadcaster SABC, a number of film associations and several of the film schools that churn out the highly skilled crews that help draw international productions to the territory. Many of the major equipment companies needed to support the film industry are also based in Johannesburg. The city centre has the world's third largest number of Art Deco buildings (after New York and Miami), with a legacy that includes The Empire, Broadcast House, Astor Mansions, His Majesty's Theatre, Anstey's Building, Manners Mansions and Normandie Court. The main brief of the Joburg Film Office, which launched in June 2016, is to promote Johannesburg's attractions to the international community. And those attractions are plentiful, says Joburg Film Office manager Monique Griffiths: "As the largest city in South Africa, we’re home to a diverse international population. That means there’s always something on offer that speaks to residents of the world when they visit Johannesburg." Johannesburg’s urban settings range from pristine to gritty, from heritage to ultra-modern. "We also have beautifully landscaped and tree-lined suburbs, trendy streets with outdoor eateries and cafes, and several neighbourhood markets,” Griffiths says. “And, if one drives 30 to 40 minutes outside of the city-centre limits, the Joburg scenery completely transforms into beautiful green areas, hiking and bik-

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BRINGING YOUR STORIES TO LIFE. WHAT IS YOUR STORY? C

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Scout no further than KwaZulu-Natal for your next production. With provincial incentives, National rebates, film friendly locations and the most diverse and inspiring backdrops - our kingdom is your stage. See how to be creative and budget sensitive by visiting: www.kwazulunatalfilm.co.za 10th Floor, Musgrave Towers,115 Musgrave Road, Berea, Durban, 4001, South Africa. Tel: +27 31 325 0200

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@KwaZuluNatalFilmCommission @kwazulufilm @kwazulunatalfilm KZN Film Commission

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ing trails, and refreshing open fields." The Joburg Film Office is also part of an effort to support local independents, which includes developing a tiered structure for permits based on whether a company is emerging, small or well-established. Griffiths’ team also works with larger studios to give emerging producers access to studio space, state-of-the-art equipment and other production support. While Johannesburg’s tariff system does not affect international producers, it can raise the cost of local productions — a situation the Joburg Film Office says it is currently reviewing. Griffiths illustrates the problem: "Because of the regional structure of Joburg, a highspeed chase may run through the main artery of the city and pass through three city regions. Despite being a short stretch, each region will charge a separate, equal amount. This can make it quite expensive for small local productions. We are investigating how to develop cost structures that work for all levels of productions coming into the city." Located just outside of Johannesburg, Creative Space Media (CSM) serves as a prime example of what South Africa can offer both international and local producers. Over the past few years, CSM has provided military-grade locations to productions including District 9 (2009), Avengers: Age Of Ultron (2015) and Neill Blomkamp's Chappie (2015). Now, CSM has launched a subsidiary, Active Media, which is aimed at helping international and local producers. The new outfit is headed by CEO Colin Singarum, who has spent more than a decade working in the South African aerospace and defence industry. Active Media’s military services and locations include active and decommissioned bases, military vehicles and even stunt pilots, drivers and base jumpers who have been trained by the South African Air Force. "We've also got five Harvard aircraft at our disposal for stunts and other activations,” Singarum says. "At the 'base', we have decommissioned military aircraft and vehicles, from Super Pumas, an Impala Aermacchi MB-326 [a light military jet aircraft designed in Italy] and a Cheetah fighter jet to an RG-31 armoured vehicle. South Africa has a well developed aerospace and defence industry and we have a great relationship with the Aerospace, Maritime and Defence Industries Association of South Africa, which gains access to 90 defence companies with visually exciting products, from military drones to rugged-tested military vehicles." Gauteng may be South Africa’s smallest province but it is also the wealthiest and one of the most dynamic in terms of economy and infrastructure. It also has a film industry that dates back more than a century. Gauteng’s locations range from urban and industrial landscapes to gold mines, from small villages and towns to pre-colonial settlements, from classical Victorian, Edwardian and Art Deco streetscapes to nature reserves, botanical gardens, monuments and historical buildings. Gauteng Film Commission says producers from around the globe are increasingly drawn to the province’s locations. Among the most popular are the FNB Stadium, which is located in Nasrec on the borders of the Soweto area. The Calabash, as the stadium is nicknamed, is shaped like the gourd-shaped squash. It is the largest stadium in Africa, with a capacity of just under 95,000. Also in demand is Maboneng Precinct — Maboneng means ‘place of light’ in Sotho — which has become the heart of the inner-city renaissance that is transforming Johannesburg into a creative hub; Tswaing crater, one of the

best-preserved impact crater sites in the world, which was formed some 220,000 years ago by a meteorite strike; and the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site at Maropeng, some 50 kilometres northwest of Johannesburg. Within the Cradle of Humankind are the Sterkfontein Caves, home to Mrs Ples, a 2.1 million-year-old Australopithecus skull, and Little Foot, an almost complete Australopithecus skeleton that dates back nearly three million years.

A SHOW ABOUT FOOD, PEOPLE AND PLACES

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OUTH Africa's beautiful locations have been the inspiration for a number of TV shows, among them outdoor cooking challenge The Ultimate Braai Master. The show, wildly successful in South Africa where it is now into its fifth season, was picked up last year by the Travel Channel and Discovery for global distribution. The Ultimate Braai Master is a hit as much for its tasty locations as its tasty recipes. Executive producer Peter Gird of Cooked in Africa Films says: "South Africa is about its people, its beauty and its rawness. In Braai Master, we showcase at least 20 great locations per season." South Africa’s attractions include wild coasts, white sandy beaches, rustic accommodation, great local food and friendly people. Gird adds: "We are on the road most of the year with the work that we do and so, whenever we find something new and unique, it goes into our memory banks and comes out in one of our shows."

LEARNING FROM THE BEST

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ECENT research by Wesgro — the Cape Town and Western Cape film promotion agency — and the National Film and Video Foundation shows that years of exposure to top international productions has helped fuel the growth of South Africa’s film and TV industry. Wesgro’s film and media manager, Monica Rorvik says: "The numbers are clear: having so many crew gaining experience working on big studio projects has pushed up growth in the industry. The DTI says South Africa can handle over 10 major TV series and feature films at any one time. South Africa has great actors, post-production facilities, hospitality and financial services. The sweetener to growth is that the DTI offers competitive incentives in production and post-production qualifying spend.” What’s more, Rorvik adds, South Africa’s “first-class crews speak English, and our locations are able to mimic 80% of the world without much set dressing.”

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SUNSHINE... AND

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Florida has long been popular with film, TV and commercials producers, hosting every kind of production from Flipper to Scarface. And while it has just shut down its tax-incentive programme, it has more than enough attributes to keep the cameras rolling. Andy Fry reports Mahershala Ali and Alex Hibbert in Best Film Oscar-winner Moonlight (2016)

NOT FOR nothing is Florida referred to as the ‘sunshine state’ — and you only have to take a quick glance at a map of the US to see why climate is a competitive advantage. “We’re further south than any other US state,” says Sheena Fowler, film commissioner for the Orlando Film & Television Commission, “which means we can welcome productions right through the winter.” In addition to its favourable filming climate, Florida boasts a diverse range of locations that can be accessed via a network of wellresourced local film offices. “The state has a lot of very distinctive looks,” Fowler says. “Most people think they know Orlando, for example, because of the theme parks. But in our region, we have everything from swamps and jungles to rolling hills and lakes, stretched out across the counties of Orange, Seminole, Lake and Osceola. There are also a lot of different architectural styles because of the diverse population here.” All of the above is supported by a strong talent base that is

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Hillery says that television series are actually Palm Beach’s highest available at very competitive rates. “We don’t pretend to be Los source of revenue. This is significant because the loss of the state Angeles, but we have a lot of very experienced production profesincentives will have little bearing on this work, which was not eligisionals across the state who are able to manage most types of ble anyway. A selection of series that have recently shot in Palm incoming project,” Fowler says. “And in Orlando, we also benefit Beach include Catfish (MTV), House Hunters (HGTV), I Am Jazz from having the Universal backlot and the Chapman/Leonard state(TLC), Married At First Sight (A+E), Shark Tank (ABC), Shark Week of-the-art studio complex.” (Discovery Channel), The Real Housewives Of New York City (BraFowler can back up her claims by pointing to the wide array of vo) and The Trip (Travel Channel). projects that have filmed in her jurisdiction. Recent examples A lot of commercials and photo shoots also come to the Palm include 2015 movies Tomorrowland and Paper Towns, and comBeach area. Recent brands to have visited include ANZ Bank, Gatomercials for brands including BA, Budweiser, Home Depot and rade, McDonald's/NFL, Nike Golf, Macy’s, Puma and Ralph Honda. “And our jungle was used for Discovery’s Naked And Afraid,” Lauren. she adds. While the lack of a state incentive programme will make it hardOther film offices across the state tell a similarly upbeat story. er to attract big-budget films, Hillery says her department is Situated just to the north of Miami, for example, is Palm Beach evolving in response: “Our office is funded through tourism, specifiCounty Film & Television Commission, which recorded $203m in cally bed-tax revenues through production revenue for the first hotel stays. We are now generating time in its history last year. TAYLOR HACKFORD new business through a proWith its picturesque coastline, gramme that sponsors branded sunny skies and swaying palm tourism content with distribution trees, the county provided an ideal in place. Projects include Golf backdrop for Baywatch, the Channel’s Big Break The Palm upcoming film based on the 1990s Beaches, Destination America’s TV series with stars including Zac Birding Adventures TV, PBS’ TravEfron, Priyanka Chopra and els And Traditions With Burt Wolf Dwayne Johnson. a n d Fo x S p o r t s S u n ’s “When Paramount Worldwide ScubaNation.” Productions filmed Baywatch, we Broward County is situated were able to facilitate one of their between Palm Beach to the North and Miami to the South. Includmore complicated action sequences along the coastline in Boca ing the Greater Fort Lauderdale area, Broward’s film office reckons Raton under a tight timeline,” deputy film commissioner Michelle that the economic impact of the on-location film industry has Hillery says. “In the stunt scene that is expected to appear in the totalled around $220m since 2000. opening sequence of the film, an actor jumps off the Boca Inlet’s Like Palm Beach, Broward has mastered the art of evolution southern jetty to rescue a kite surfer.” over the years. Historically, it welcomed iconic movies such as MidTo realise that sequence required a lot of agencies to pull togethnight Cowboy (1969), Caddyshack (1980), Cape Fear (1991), Donnie er. “The Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department Brasco (1997) and There’s Something About Mary (1998). More completely shut down public access to South Inlet Park for filming,” recently it has played host to big-budget TV series, including The Hillery says. “Although many off-duty marine units had already been Sopranos, Burn Notice, Dexter and Glades, as well as a number of hired to cover a sporting event that week, the Palm Beach County telenovelas. And now it is proving popular for reality TV, documenSheriff ’s Office Marine Unit was able to redirect some manpower taries, commercials, music videos, web series and still on a last-minute request to make sure that a stunt sequence was posphotography. sible. The South Florida FAA [Federal Aviation Administration] While great light and a gorgeous climate have been important office quickly reviewed and approved a request for drone usage, to the Broward story, the county has also established a good reputawhile further assistance and approval by the Miami Waterways Distion for delivering looks other than classic Florida. Over the years, trict of the US Coast Guard came in the nick of time. This support it has imitated several distinctive US landscapes, ranging from the is consistent here in The Palm Beaches. They do everything in their Kentucky Races through Venice Beach, California to Tombstone power to make sure a production has the best experience Arizona in 1881. Among its international repertoire, it has doubled possible.” for the Bering Sea, the Black Sea, Zimbabwe, Denmark, SwitzerAlso shot in Palm Beach was The Comedian (2016), directed by land, Argentina and the Australian Outback. Taylor Hackford — a big fan of the area. Hackford says the film, Diversification is also the message coming from Jeanne Corcowhich stars Robert De Niro, Danny DeVito and Harvey Keitel, proran, director of the Sarasota County Film and Entertainment Office. vided the perfect contrast to New York, which also features in the Sarasota is located on the western coast of Florida, just south of movie. He adds: “Florida is a fantasy land. People from the northeast Tampa Bay. “The big-budget projects may go to other states, but think that their dream-come-true is Florida… Therefore it has a cerwe’re continuing to attract independent films, segments of TV tain ethos. I wanted to contrast between [NY] and Palm Beach, series, such as TNT nail-salon drama Claws, commercials and web where it’s beautiful and Technicolor and balmy and sunny.” productions. Recently, we had actor Dylan McDermott here proWhile high-profile feature films always bring kudos to an area,

“Florida is a fantasy land... It’s beautiful and Technicolor and balmy and sunny ”

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recent news that ITZ Studios in Naples, two hours south of Sarasota, ducing Sugar, a web series about a woman who falls victim to has just opened a new 8,000-sq-ft film and TV facility — more than human trafficking. We’ve also had Justin Long [He's Just Not That double the size of its previous location. The company, which speInto You, 2009] and his producer brother Christian producing a web cialises in commercials and reality TV, says the facility is available series here.” for rent and includes state-of-the-art cameras, drones, jibs, and Sarasota has the usual array of Florida attributes — great coastsound and lighting kit. line, sandy beaches, blue tropical water, incredible sunsets, amazing In a state blessed with spectacular natural attributes, it is hard light. “But there are also some surprising sides to Sarasota,” Corcoto single out a particular area for praise. But there is no question the ran says. “There are the jungles, which can be used to fake Brazil or Florida Keys and Key West are unique. A series of islands to the Vietnam, and the Mediterranean charm of the cities of Venice and south of Florida that stretch out into the Gulf of Mexico, the area is Sarasota. And we have activities like rodeo and polo. We also have a virtually on the same latitude as the Bahamas. With a spectacular huge still-water lake that will host the World Rowing Championoverseas highway connecting the Keys to the mainland, it is no surships in 2017.” prise the Florida Keys & Key West Film & Entertainment Aside from its wide array of attractive locations, Corcoran says Commission promotes its region as having “the look and feel of the a big draw to Sarasota is the Ringling College of Art and Design: “A Caribbean with the convenience of shooting in America”. lot of film and TV talent visit the college to give talks, but they also As with other parts of Florida, often use the students to help with the loss of the tax incentive means making web productions. The colJEANNE CORCORAN the main areas of activity for the lege is just about to open a Keys going forward will be state-of-the-art 40,000 sq ft [3,716 unscripted TV series, commercials sq m] sound stage and post-proand photo shoots. But it is also duction complex, which will give proof that sometimes a location is students the opportunity to work so perfect for a production that with industry professionals and you have to put the incentive issue get re al -wo r l d pro duc t io n to one side. experience.” This point is underlined by Sarasota has it’s own cashBloodline, the acclaimed Netflix rebate programme. Capped at drama series that comes to an end $25,000 per production, it covers in 2017 after season three. Execu100% of county governmental fees tive producer Todd A Kessler and 20% of private-sector qualilooked at several places and realfied expenditures. “It’s not going to ised “there is no place quite like attract big-budget productions, the Keys and the colour of the but it’s certainly big enough to be water and being outside and it feelinteresting to smaller or mediuming like paradise and then having sized productions,” Corcoran says. this kind of underbelly of what's The kind of entrepreneurship going on underneath it”. identified by Corcoran is also evident in the Tampa Bay Area, anothWith a total budget in the region of $250m over three years, the er important landmark in Florida’s film industry. Like other parts loss of Bloodline will have an impact on the local filming economy of the state, Tampa Bay has had to accept that it cannot compete in the Keys. But there will hopefully be one important legacy: since with other states’ incentives. For example, Ben Affleck's thriller Live the show started, the volume of visitors to the location of IslamorBy Night (2016), which is set around Tampa, was shot in Georgia. ada has increased dramatically. However, Film Tampa Bay commissioner Dale Gordon has been Not to be overlooked in any survey of Florida is the flamboyant thinking outside the box. For example, her department, which sits city of Miami. While the lack of state incentives is having an impact within the region’s tourism bureau Visit Tampa Bay, has spent the here too, Sandy Lighterman, film and entertainment commissioner last couple of years looking at ways to maximise the economic at the Miami-Dade Office of Film & Entertainment, says the city is growth opportunities surrounding digital media. constantly busy with commercials, reality TV and other lower budgThe film commission has also prioritised the commercials et productions. industry, which likes the Tampa Bay area because of its skilled workShe also takes heart from the fact that Miami is such a visually force and varied locations. Gordon claims to preside over “one of unique city: “It’s difficult to double. So if a film or TV series is set the most culturally rich and diverse landscapes in the state of Florhere, it’s not easy to take it elsewhere. At the very least, we tend to ida”, and highlights features including urban skylines, beautiful get a piece of projects like that. A good example is Versace: Ameriwaterfronts and culturally distinct neighbourhoods, farms and rural can Crime Story, which will spend some days here. We’re also getting areas. Echoing Orlando’s Fowler, she also talks up the advantages of the pilot of another Miami-based story, ABC’s La Reinas, though the having such a blessed climate, saying that commercials producers series will go elsewhere.” “need somewhere in winter that looks like summer”. Miami-Dade covers a lot more than Miami’s downtown, LightMore evidence of the west coast’s continued vibrancy was the

“There are some surprising sides to Sarasota. There are jungles, which can be used to fake Brazil or Vietnam, and the Mediterranean charm of Venice and Sarasota”

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Zac Efron (left), director Seth Gordon and Dwayne Johnson on the set of the film Baywatch from Paramount Pictures, Montecito Picture Company, FlynnPicture Co and Fremantle Productions. Photo: Frank Masi. ©2017 Paramount Pictures. All rights reserved

erman adds: “We’re the seventh biggest county in the US, so we cover a wide range of rural and urban looks — everything from tropical islands to urban settings. We’ve been used to double everything from Chicago and New York to Afghanistan.” On the subject of incentives, she says there is good news on the horizon: “We’re drawing up our own Miami-specific incentive, which will be centred on job creation in the county. It should be ready soon and I’d hope it would help us attract more independent films, like Oscar-winner Moonlight.” A gritty coming-of-age story, Moonlight shot in some of Miami’s poor black neighbourhoods for around 25 days at the end of 2015, Lighterman says. Director Barry Jenkins and his co-writer on the film Tarell Alvin

McCraney, grew up in Miami “and wanted this story to reflect that experience”, she adds. “So it’s shot in the kind of public-housing projects you wouldn’t ordinarily see. We helped them organise shoots in a way that didn’t cause too much disruption to the residents. And when they couldn't get the location they wanted, we’d help them find alternatives.” Lighterman believes the film will have a positive impact on the Miami industry in a couple of key ways: “Firstly, it’s a message to local talent that they can have successes like this. And secondly, it will encourage outside producers to think about Miami differently and explore other locations. There are so many more amazing stories and interesting places to discover.”

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Location International 2017  

The world's leading magazine focusing on global location and studio production.

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