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Filming in Portugal

Coronavirus Update: Portugal has published COVID-19 Guidelines for filming in the country. Small-scale shoots resumed in June. There are entry rules to mainland Portugal. Depending on where you are travelling from you may be subject to health screening which may lead to a COVID-19 test and self-isolation. This applies to the UK, the European Area, Australia, China and Canada. Travellers from countries not specified on the list will need to show a negative test taken 72 hours before departure. 

With a warm and sunny Mediterranean climate and within easy reach of European hubs, Portugal has long been a popular filming destination.

In recent years Portugal’s competitive 25-30% incentive for physical and post-production has found appeal with a number of larger scale international productions.

Fatima, a historical drama based on the true story of a young shepherd who reportedly saw visions of the Virgin Mary, was one of the first recipients of the cash rebate. The studio sized feature filmed in various locations throughout Portugal including Coimbra, a medieval town and the setting of the original story. The majority of cast and crew were sourced from Portugal which maximised the cash rebate but also served to help the incoming production navigate working in regional settings.

Ira Sach’s Frankie also filmed in Portugal in 2019. Starring Brendan Gleeson, the family drama filmed in Sintra, a UNESCO World Heritage town popular for filming due to its proximity to Lisbon. Hellboy, Rambo V and Angel has Fallen are amongst the VFX heavy features that have taken advantage of the postproduction incentive.

Good local crew pools and strong production support can be found throughout the country while capital city Lisbon remains a film-friendly destination with the most studio space.

The great thing about each of these locations that director Martin Krejci selected was that they each had five or six different environments, so in the end the film had a wide variety of forest locations which was essential to enabling us to show such a wide range of IKEA LED lights.

Nick Page, Page International

Climate

The south of Portugal has a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and mild winters. The hottest month is August with an average high of 28C. The coldest is January with an 8C average.

Summer temperatures are high but are eased by cooling sea breezes. The north is much wetter and cooler as it has a stronger Atlantic influence.

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