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Filming in Ukraine

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Ukraine is popular with advertising work as well as TV and film production due to its developed infrastructure, crews, locations and competitive costs. A newly introduced Cash Rebate providing up to 30% of qualified costs further strengthens Ukraine's appeal.

Recent projects to have chosen this Eastern European destination include historical feature films Mr. Jones from director Agnieszka Holland which tells the story of real-life journalist who uncovered Stalin’s genocidal famine in Ukraine, and Armando Ianucci’s political satire The Death of Stalin. Other genre work includes Chinese sci-fi The Wandering Earth which completed VFX work in Ukraine, and Hindi language musical 99 Songs from Oscar award winning composer A.R. Rahman. In 2020, Netflix shot their first feature project, The Last Mercenary starring  Jean-Claude Van Damme in Kyiv. Commercial clients include Peugeot, Nike, PlayStation and Google.

The newly introduced 25-30% cash rebate reflects the range of incoming work. The rebate allows up to 30% for high end film and TV work as well as commercial and music videos, which make a bulk of production work in the country. A 4.5-10% rebate applies to foreign talent fees paid in Ukraine.

Ukraine also has a well-developed industry infrastructure and remains cost- effective. More than 200 production companies, film studios, post-production and visual effects facilities make up Ukraine's film industry. It also has an expanding base of low-cost yet talented film crew and cast. Film.UA is one of the largest studios, with eight soundstages including a motion capture stage, and a backlot.

Natural landscapes range from Black and Azov Seas in the South and Southeast, and the Carpathian mountains in the west. Throughout the country cathedrals, medieval castles and fortresss sit alongside industrial quarters and large civic buildings.  Kyiv is an increasingly popular location and is replete with Gothic, Byzantine and Baroque architecture and Lviv is the centre of Western Ukraine is another great option as a perfectly preserved medieval city. There are eleven local film commissions to support regional work.

Visa's are not required for citizens of the EU, Canada, the UK and USA and can stay up to three months without any special permits. The country is well-connected to most European cities and Kyiv is served by two international airports that also connect regional centres.

We weren’t expecting a good experience in Ukraine but it turned out to be really good. The local crew was great and Kiev’s a really beautiful city. I’d recommend it as a nice, atmospheric city that when combined with the lower costs has a lot of appeal.

Hein Scheffer, Producer

Climate

Ukraine’s climate is generally dry and continental, although the southern regions are more Mediterranean. Winters are long and temperatures typically fall to lows of 0C but can sometimes reach
-20C and deliver heavy snowstorms. Summers are shorter and conditions generally peak at about 30C but can sometimes climb higher.

There is normally little rain during the summer and the inland areas get less rainfall through the course of a year, with the wettest parts of the country being the north and the west. The coastal areas around the Black Sea can get severe thunderstorms.

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