Varaždin Film Commission
Varaždin Film Commission cooperates with the Croatian Audio-Visual Centre, the town of Varaždin, Varaždin County, the Tourist Board of Varaždin and the Tourist Board of Varaždin County in order to help Varaždin develop as a film friendly town. Its aim is to improve the tourist offer and economic situation of the town as well as to give a boost to new firms and small production companies which will be mostly opened within the Technology Park Varaždin. This will also create new job opportunities for the students from the University North, the Faculty of Organisation and Informatics, the Academy of Fine Arts and the Academy of Dramatic Art. The webpage you are currently visiting contains a website catalogue whose contents will be updated continually.
Also, a database of people who are willing to participate in productions either as extras or as auxiliary workers is going to be created.
The idea of Varaždin as a film friendly town is based on several concepts which include state support, the Croatian Film Strategy whose aim is to promote Croatia as country suitable for film making, economic development, an increase in local consumption, direct benefit to the local community and the promotion of tourism.
WHAT WE DO AND HOW WE DO IT
In 2012, a system of incentive measures for the investment in the film industry was introduced for the purpose of the development of the film and television industry. It functions in such a way that if a project meets certain criteria of a cultural test, such as a cultural content, the share of Croatian creative and technical teams and engagement of a Croatian co-producer, it eligible for a reimbursement of 20% of the costs incurred in Croatia. The reimbursement refers to feature, documentary and animated films, TV films and series, but it does not refer to commercials, reality shows, quizzes or soap operas.
A foreign producer has to establish a cooperation with a local producer, a co-producer or a production company from Croatia which financed at least one audio-visual work in the last three years. An application is submitted to the Croatian Audio-Visual Centre at least 30 days prior to the beginning of filming. In the application an applicant has to prove that:
- a minimum of 70% of financial means have been provided to cover production costs
- a minimum number of points in the cultural test is 12 out of 34
- a minimum of 30% of a film crew is made up of Croatians or Europeans if a film is partly made in Croatia or 50% if a film is made solely in Croatia
- a Croatian partner can provide a full range of production services, which include the choice of a filming location, a filming plan, a film budget, the choice of actors as well as creative and technical staff members and that it is responsible for all the production services during film making in the country from the beginning to the end of a production
The minimum amount of costs which are recognised for incentive measures are as follows:
- during the process of making a feature film: 263.000,00 euros
- during the process of making a documentary: 39.000,00 euros
- during the process of making an animated film: 66.000,00 euros
- during the process of making a TV film: 132.000,00 euros
- during the process of making TV series (for an episode): 99.000,00 euros
Before the process of filming in Croatia starts, a foreign partner has to register and fill in an application on a website. After that, the Croatian Audio-Visual Centre (HAVC) issues a certificate which is required for getting permission from competent local authorities to make a film.
- 5% of tourists coming from the EU member states point out the location of their favourite film as the main reason for choosing a tourist destination
- the location of a favourite film is even more important for foreign guests from Asia when choosing a tourist destination
- film tourism influences the extension of a tourist season- a year-round product
- more and more tourist agencies include in their offer a visit to filming locations; for now, it is based on a tailor-made principle (an offer is based on a specific inquiry and client requirements)
The 2015 annual report of the Croatian Audio-Visual Centre (http://www.havc.hr/file/publication/file/havc-izvjestaj-2015-web.pdf) stated that the Programme of Film Incentive Measures made a local profit of 160,839.054,07 kunas during 492 days in which foreign films were made in Croatia. Thanks to the Programme Croatia made a profit of 326,300.000,00 kunas from a total of 27 international productions during 4 years, which makes it one of the most profitable state support programmes.
THE EFFECTS OF THE PROGRAMME
- Economic effects through local consumption and state contributions
- The development of people who work in the film industry in terms of creating new job opportunities and expanding their technical potential
- Extension of a tourist season
- Free global promotion of tourist locations
The film industry has a potential to open new workplaces and to bring economic benefits to the whole country and incentive measures for a film and TV production are an important step in that process. However, a lot more has to be done in order to reposition Croatia as an important film production destination.
In order to continue this positive growth and to maximise the effect of the Programme on the economy, Varaždin Film Commission will continuously work on training people for specific jobs in the film industry. It will also encourage film making in Varaždin by offering help during a production and by assisting in the application for EU funding. It will also organise educational, amateur and professional film workshops.