In the week marking the first anniversary of our new website being launched, the focus is once again on filming incentives in the US, while specific geographic needs have resulted in the new Mad Max sequel relocating from Australia. In the UK new plans are underway to continue boosting location filming in London around the Olympics.
New Mexico has tentatively announced that the lavish film adaptation of The Lone Ranger, starring Johnny Depp as Tonto, is finalising plans to film in the state. Why tentative? Well, the film’s producers – principally Jerry Bruckheimer – are looking for the best incentive schemes they can find and seem intent on negotiating a better deal than what’s officially on offer at the moment in the state.
New Mexico probably needs to offer what The Lone Ranger wants if it’s to remain in the studios’ good books, although authorities will need to decide if they can really afford to compete with the likes of Louisiana.
The stakes are high for New Mexico. It’s done a lot of business in recent years with high-profile productions like Thor, The Avengers and True Grit, but then earlier this year the annual film fund was slashed to USD50 million (having awarded twice that the previous year). The state probably needs to offer what The Lone Ranger wants if it’s to remain in the studios’ good books, although authorities will need to decide if they can really afford to compete with the likes of Louisiana.
Elsewhere, Alexander Payne has talked about filming on location on the Hawaiian island of Kaua’i for his feature The Descendants. He praised the state’s commitment to location filming incentives, but added that budgetary constraints still meant he had to look a little off the beaten path for the right places to shoot, while the recent Pirates of the Caribbean sequel stole some of his crew. The implication seems to be that Hawaii becomes more film-friendly the bigger the production budget.
Over to Africa and George Miller has confirmed that his Mad Max sequel Fury Road will film in Namibia after a long production delay in Australia. With Broken Hill in New South Wales covered in wild flowers, the writer/director needs a proper desert landscape as the post-apocalyptic setting is such an iconic element of the Mad Max canon.
Namibia offers one of the more obvious film-friendly alternatives for Mad Max as it has its own burgeoning industry. Hosting Fury Road is a terrific high-profile opportunity for the country to show off its natural assets to the world.
Namibia offers one of the more obvious film-friendly alternatives as it has its own burgeoning industry. Hosting Fury Road is a terrific high-profile opportunity for the country to show off its natural assets to the world.
The Olympics will dominate London’s headlines in 2012, but Film London has announced it is developing a new online portal to sustain the city’s profile as a filming location both in 2012 and in the future. There aren’t too many details yet about how it will look or operate, but on the face of it, it sounds like a good idea. It’ll need to be launched sooner rather than later though if productions planning a 2012 shoot are to truly benefit from it.
Our commercial highlight of the week is Nescafe's new spot, Hypnotist. The Mexico City filming location is relegated to a background setting, but its conceit of a hypnotist getting a crowd to engage more with each other is well-executed. Production service company Distrito Films revealed the challenges of working in the Mexico City - filming permits may give you permission to shoot in a good-looking environment, but never them to deliver a closed set.
We’ve had lots of comment this week from location professionals around the world. Location Manager Santiago Pampliega talked us through filming in Tierra del Fuego on the southern tip of Argentina, while Location Scout Paul Sebastian Moreau spoke about working in south-west Germany.
Nancy Haecker, the long-time Location Manager on TV show House, MD, talked to us about her career, fresh from winning a gong at the California On-Location Awards.
Over in the south-western US, Nancy Haecker, the long-time Location Manager on TV show House, MD, talked to us about her career, fresh from winning a gong at the California On-Location Awards. Finally, in South Africa, Producer Elle Matthews explained how her firm Green Shoot Films is pursuing eco-friendly business practices.
As always, The Location Guide’s Film-Friendly Locations database continues to grow. If you manage a building or a location that you think qualifies as film-friendly, or you’ve filmed somewhere recently that you think should be listed on our website, please contact Ewa.
If you've been working on location anywhere in the world and you're looking for some press coverage, please contact Nick. We’d all be happy to hear from you.
Camera image courtesy of BelocalFilms.
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