Written by Murray Ashton on Apr 27, 2012. Posted in Interviews

Filming on location in Argentina with Executive Producer Julian Vella

Born in Uruguay, Julian grew up in Argentina and New York. He is now based in Buenos Aires and first began offering personalised production services in Argentina 15 years ago with clients initially coming from Australia, the US and Germany.

“My first trip to Cannes was in 1997. I needed a company name and, since Argentina was not yet established as a film destination, I chose Shoot Argentina. I now also offer services in Uruguay and Chile through associate companies.”

Tell me about the region you cover.

I offer my executive and line producer services across Argentina, Uruguay and Chile in association with local companies in each country. I found this the best way to optimise the service experience and costs for my clients, while keeping it light and flexible. Most of all it enables me to concentrate on producing which is what I like the most!

These three countries seen all together have a very large variety of locations - almost anything you can think of - while optimising technical resources, crews and talent.

What locations are most commonly used by film and TV crews when they come and film in Argentina, Uruguay or Chile?

In Argentina it is Buenos Aires, the European-looking city streets, avenues, houses and flats. There’s the modern downtown city, skyscrapers, renewed docks and also American-style neighbourhoods.

In Uruguay it is the European parts, plus the beautiful beaches and houses, especially in Punta del Este. In Chile Santiago offers a variety of modern, traditional and American-looking neighbourhoods. Within two hours of the city there are high mountains, skiing, lakes and beaches.

What are the more unusual locations in your region that our readers would not necessarily associate with these countries?

I would say deserts, salt flats, glaciers and remote towns all over and especially in the mountains. In southern Chile, where access is difficult, there is a place that has snow 365 days a year.

What has been your most difficult location assignment to date and why?

Building and shooting a set high up in the snow. We were shooting with a huge crew and a techno crane on an amazingly high peak. It was freezing cold and there was lots of wind and snow with an avalanche risk; that was for @radicalmedia NY a few years ago.

What types of productions do you work on most regularly?

Commercials are what we do the most. My latest projects were both in Uruguay for old friends and clients. In the first place Tesauro from Spain with Veronica Orueta and Pancho Alted, and directed by Fernando Garcia Ruiz. We shot a musical with 50 dancers all over the downtown streets of Montevideo.

Secondly, and also with good friends, we filmed with Pablo Martinez from Propaganda Producciones in Spain. Wendy Morgan directed and the DoP was Javier Julia from Argentina. On this project, for Banco Santander, we shot on a 7D in a real guerrilla style with street children. It was a beautiful project, small and dynamic.

Which foreign producers and production companies have you most enjoyed working with in Argentina over the years?

Tesauro, Propaganda Producciones, Markenfilm from Germany, @radicalmedia, Toma 78 with La Doble Nelson.

What would you recommend crew and cast do to have fun and relax in Argentina in their downtime?

There are so many options! I would say to take at least a week off after the shoot. Stay in Buenos Aires with its streets, restaurants and clubs, then fly to Punta del Este in Uruguay to the beach, but be fast - you also need to take in the tremendous Iguazu Falls. Then you need time to fly all the way down to Chilean and Argentine Patagonia.

After a full-on location shot what do you do to relax?

Stay home with my kids for a few movies and books. If they are not in school get on the road to some remote place!

Thank you.

Click here to contact Julian.


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