Georgia, THE COUNTRY, offers diverse, inspirational locations and a 20-25% cash rebate! Beyond the little spot on the map there is so much more to explore!
Georgia has recently emerged as a hotspot for international productions offering unique visuals, modern infrastructure and film-friendly society to filmmakers. On top of the above mentioned, productions can benefit from film industry incentive “Film in Georgia”- 20-25% rebate on qualified local spend.
Not many know about Georgia, the country, located in the heart of the Caucasus region, on the crossroad of Europe and Asia. Beyond the Little, Georgia is a scaled down version of the planet Earth (the country can be crossed by car in five or six hours), where you can capture snow-topped mountains in the morning and be in a sun-drenched cove in the afternoon. Despite relatively small size, the country has a lot to offer to filmmakers- from craggy mountains to seashores, tick humid woods to semi-deserts, a picturesque Black Sea coastline of rocky/sandy beaches and charming seaside villages – all within a day’s reach of each other.
The country features unique and captivating fusion of medieval and modern architecture with Asian, European and Soviet styles – flamboyant glass-and-steel structures stand next to a 13th century cliff-top church, Art-Nouveau buildings and “komunalki”s built during Stalin era. Tbilisi, the capital, itself is an engaging city, as Persians, Byzantines, Ottomans and Russians have played rough with it for a very long time and each has left a little of its best self here. Georgia makes it possible to double a lot of countries and periods.
2016 was a turning point, both for Georgian filmmakers and for international production companies filming in Georgia. The Ministry of Economy and Sustainable development of Georgia together with Ministry Culture and Sport of Georgia launched a new program “Film in Georgia” to boost creative industries in the country. The incentive scheme is open for local and international features and TV series spending at least $250,000 in Georgia. Documentaries, commercials, reality TV shows and music videos spending at least $140,000 are also eligible. “Film in Georgia” offers the 20% rebate (no content requirement or cultural test there), adding a further up to 5% if Georgia is the project promotes Georgia. Production costs are lower across the board compared to similar locations in Western Europe and budget of day shooting of a feature film is calculated at between $15,000-$25,000. Besides financial assistance Film in Georgia offers non-financial services including assistance in the form of location scouting, procurement of permits and communication with various state and private stakeholders. The whole process is designed to be simple and fast. Today we are happy to say that beyond the little time of the launch of the program, the incentive has already attracted 12 international productions, out of which 9 have been completed. The accumulated spending of all of these productions has amounted to more than GEL 19 mln and 1900 local stuff employed. The 12 projects are Georgian – European (France, Germany, and Italy) co-productions, Indian projects some entirely shot in Georgia, two US and one UK project. It’s remarkable that for the very first time Georgian movie, “Film in Georgia” beneficiary- “My happy family” (2017) by Simon Gross & Nana Ekvtimishvili was premiered at Sundance, screened at Berlinale and distribution rights were purchased by Netflix; US production “Halo of Stars” by Anthony Lucero starring Lily Collins, Holliday Grainger and Stacy Martin is to be released this year, most probably at Sundance. It is worth mentioning that 4 projects have already been rebated.
Furthermore, beyond the little country, has vibrant film industry which dates back to 1908. National cinematography has enjoyed great success and established its own unique identity. The success of Georgian films is a vivid example of that – “Tangerines” (2013) by Zaza Urushadze has been nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 87th Academy Awards and at the 72nd Golden Globe Awards; “Corn Island” (2014) by George Ovashvili was selected as the Georgian entry for consideration for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 87th Academy Awards.
Georgia has undergone significant transformation rapidly moving towards becoming an attractive and easy place to do business, travel, live and, of course, make movies. Efforts have been achieved and reflected in major international rankings – we are # 9 in terms of ease of doing business according to the World Bank Group and 3rd safest country in Europe according to Numbeo. Beyond the little country, has flexible labor market, cheap energy costs, and low-taxes (#9 Low Tax Rate Economies-World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report). Country has modern infrastructure with well-developed roads and rail system. It has three international airports with direct flights from major European cities, including Munich, Frankfurt, Vienna, London, Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam, Berlin and Warsaw.
Variety of the filming locations, combined with high-quality local production related service providers and attractive business environment have put Georgia on the world’s filmmaking map.
Film in Georgia – it is much more than beyond the little place on the map!
Tbilisi, The Capital
Kazbegi, Mtskheta-Mtianeti Region
Kharagauli, Imereti Region
Mtirala National Park, Adjara Region
Vardzia Cave Monastery, Samtkhe-Javakheti Region
Borjomi, Samtkhe-Javakheti Region
Lebaiskari Fortress, Khevsureti Region
Koruldi Lakes, Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti Region
Ushguli, Svaneti Region
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