Film in Georgia Program to Entice Filmmakers to Georgia

Within the framework of a new state initiative by the Georgian government, the state program Produce in Georgia has added a new program for the film industry.

Film in Georgian, part of the Produce in Georgia program, is to offer benefits to local and international producers interested in film production. Prime Minister of Georgia, Giorgi Kvirikashvili, presented the program this week at Exhibition Center Karvasla.

The program introduces a cash rebate mechanism which will give producers the opportunity to shoot films and get 25% of the qualifying costs back. This mechanism is approved in many countries, is based on market demand and has great potential in terms of Georgian socio-economic development, sure to make Georgia an attractive shooting center in Eastern Europe.

The compensation mechanism is related to the following areas: feature film, TV film, TV series or mini-series, animation, documentary, promotional video production, reality show and music clips.

The film industry encouragement program is an incentive for many recognized international directors and producers to come to Georgia and use this new possibility; it also fosters Georgian potential in terms of shooting locations and promotes the country’s popularity and tourism potential, economic growth and employment of the local population. It also serves to create significant opportunities for the market in terms of the flow of new technologies and improves the skills of local film industry representatives; makes outdated material-technical base-substitution and develops fields related to the creation of various film types.

“We all know the importance Georgian cinema had in forming the country’s image and culture,” said PM Kvirikashvili. “Cinema was always a visa on the international arena. There are few countries which have a hundred-year history of cinematography such as we have. We think this new initiative will contribute to the development of cinematography as an industry and as a business. And our country will become Eastern Europe’s most attractive filming location,” he said.

The program was created by the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development and the Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection in cooperation with the Georgian National Film Center. The presentation was attended by Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, Dimitry Kumsishvili; Minister of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia, Mikheil Giorgadze; and the heads of the Entrepreneurship Development Agency and Georgian National Film Center, as well as representatives of public and private sectors, Georgian producers, travel agencies, Georgian airlines, hotel network, film production and various field members.

Despite its small size, in Georgia, international filmmakers can shoot sea, desert, mountains and forests in one day; capture 22 climatic zones across only 69,000 square. km; and take advantage of the ideal mix of ancient and modern architecture- Asian, European and Soviet buildings. Public locations can be utilized free of charge. Furthermore, film-makers can enjoy the Single-window principle; exceptionally low bureaucracy and business-friendly tax system; less restrictive labor laws; high-speed, fiber-optic Internet infrastructure throughout the country; modern infrastructure, three international airports, travel and cargo ports and railways.

Over the last three years, the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia has had close contacts with a number of foreign producers and, as a result, a group of Indian Producers have visited the country and shot three movies, two music and five promotional videos to date.

Additionally, Georgia was chosen as the location for Michel Hazanavicius’ film The Search and Partizan – an Australian film starring Vincent Cassel, shot in Tbilisi, Rustavi, Likani, Borjomi, Tusheti and Javakheti.

Meri Taliashvili with the contribution of Ana Akhalaia

28 January 2016 19:47