Written by Shona Smith on Jan 28, 2020. Posted in On Location

Star Trek: Picard doubled Californian vineyard for French winemaking region of Bordeaux

Set fifteen years after the end of Star Trek: The Next Generation, Patrick Stewart reprises his role as Jean-Luc Picard. The series opens to see Picard at his family’s wine-producing chateau in Bordeaux, France after breaking with Starfleet.

The vineyards set the scene for Picard’s much anticipated return and have featured prominently in the series’ promotional material. Centred in California, the production used one of the state's wine valleys to double for France’s famous wine producing region of Bordeaux and Picard's family chateau.

According to the experts at The Drinks Business, the "vine’s-training and low density vineyard” were a give away for its Californian location. Filming took place in April 2019 at the Sunstone winery & in the Santa Ynez Valley and general manager David Moser told the magazine that the production team needed “an authentic-looking French chateau within driving distance of LA”.

California’s desert-scapes and in demand sound stages were also used for the ten-episode series. Approval for California Film and TV Tax Credit 2.0 may well have been a swaying factor in bringing the production to California, rather than in Toronto where CBS’ Star Trek Discovery films. The tax credit has been successful in attacting relocating TV series such as Penny Dreadful and Sneaky Pete as well as new recurring series such as Picard.

The first series was approved for a qualified expenditure of USD75.5 million amounting to tax credits worth USD15.7 million. Scheduled for 125 filming days in California, the production hired three hundred crew members and seventy-two cast members alongside over two thousand extras.

Before the series debuted, CBS announced it had officially renewed the drama for a second season. In December, the second series had been approved for a USD20.5 million tax credit based on a provisional budget of USD101.2 million budget, larger than its first series.

Image Credit: CBS

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