The Portugal Film Commission through the eyes of those who share the day to day promotion and development of the sector. Producers, partners, focal points and professionals from the film and audiovisual industry give their insights about Portugal Film Commission and the process of Filming in Portugal.
The Regional Entities are key players in the different municipalities and intermunicipal communities, associations and entrepreneurships, and with their experience they have an enormous knowledge of the territory and its synergies. Turismo Centro de Portugal is therefore one of the focal points of the Portugal Film Commission and has the opportunity to regularly give its opinion on the promotional strategy for the country and the regions to national and international producers. And this relationship is fundamental to guarantee that the missions of both institutions are perfectly aligned. With this dissemination and with the capture of film productions, regions gain notoriety and visibility, and benefit from direct investment (accommodation, restaurants, among others) and indirect investment (watching a destination in the cinema, TV or streaming platform generates motivation to visit that location). These are key factors to ensure the integrated and cohesive development of Portugal and its different regions.
Adriana Rodrigues, Turismo Centro de Portugal
When I recall the collaborative process we had, it feels like doing it all over again.
Ana Carina, Praça Films
The work carried out by the Portugal Film Commission has been crucial for the sector, not only by promoting Portugal as a filming destination, but also by providing an opportunity for the internationalisation of national economic agents – one of AICEP’s areas of activity – namely through the DProduction Guide, created for this purpose.
Cristina Góis Amorim, AICEP
As member of the European Film Commissions Network – EUFCN, the Portugal Film Commission actively participates to the associations’ initiatives and events, bringing its experience and challenges to the table and learning from other film commissions with enthusiasm and great involvement.
EUFCN – European Film Commissions Network
A fundamental partner for Doclisboa and Nebulae, the festival’s industry space, Portugal Film Commission has contributed, and continues to contribute, to the strengthening of Portuguese film and the promotion and positioning of the national industry within the international industry.
Glenda Balucani, Doclisboa
Our partnership with PFC began with the development of their online platforms in order to promote the goals and reinforce the intended message: the Portugal Film Commission and the PIC Portugal, aiming to disseminate the support, incentives, agreements and scouting. The synergies of a professional relationship quickly became closer and friendly, allowing it, with enough rigour and simplicity, to scale up to a unique project in Portugal. We have no doubt that the success of PFC is only possible thanks to this project team that every day promotes synergies and the affirmation of Portugal within the film and audiovisual industry.
Hugo Ferreira da Silva, Brandtellers
The collaboration with the Portugal Film Commission has been fruitful, given that it has contributed to the promotion of a positive international image of the national road and rail heritage managed by Infraestruturas de Portugal.
Infraestruturas de Portugal
Portugal represents a magnificent opportunity for our productions, where we have been able to shoot in some incredibly beautiful and yet still widely unseen locations for Portuguese Series such as Glória and Rabo de Peixe, or some of our most iconic shows like La casa de papel. We are committed to the amazing Portuguese talent and the opportunity to share it with the world.
Isadora Laban, Content Manager for Netflix in Spain and Portugal
The day Portugal Film Commission appeared on the market, two essential questions occurred to me: will it be our competitor? Will it support us? Portugal Film Commission, even without knowing it, came to give us a stimulus to continue doing the work we had set out to do, even without any incentive or financial support from the cultural entities, be they governmental, municipal or inter-municipal. I came to realize that their attitude was precisely to support the other Film Commissions, developing their work, always side by side with the Alentejo and Ribatejo Film Commission, requesting information and giving back a lot more, offering to take our work and promotional material to markets and events to which we would never be able to go to by ourselves. Among other things, such as joint meetings to discuss ideas and listen to our opinions, doubts and desires. Always in a cordial but frank relationship, with professionalism but of proximity.
João Antero, President of Alentejo and Ribatejo Film Commission
My first experience on a large international production was on the “Vampire Academy” series, and the following year I had the opportunity to be more deeply involved in the film “Heart of Stone”.
In the first experience I got a sense of what a big international production is, where everything is extremely well segmented and there are people assigned to each and every role.
In the second case, I confess that it was more impacting, the first impression was the extremely explicit and detailed video mock-up, with this visual support we were able to get a perspective of our field work. Anyone who works in production knows the obstacles we sometimes face when filming in Lisbon, not only due to the lack of conditions depending on the type of project, but also the difficulties inherent to the city itself, I refer in some cases to the non-acceptance by the residents and shopkeepers, parking problems, inglorious effort to get support bases, basic needs and inherent to the production itself.
In this context, the availability and means were different; several times I heard my boss say “you are thinking in Portuguese” because our reality often obliges us to make the most with the least, but in these circumstances the means were extensive and we had all the ingredients and utensils to be able to perform our function with the maximum of pride; the issue of parking was well accepted by shopkeepers and residents because production provided parking in private lots, which simplified our work. It is also important to mention the availability and support of the Portugal and Lisbon Film Commission, as well as the police service.
In general, I think that in both cases we managed to impress due to our response capacity and quality of work. In my opinion, we have a lot of working virtues and this ends up surprising how such a small country has so much knowledge and working skills.
In terms of structure and dynamics, personally speaking I really enjoyed working on projects of this magnitude, the work deadlines meet the real needs of the project, we have time to plan all the events, time to inform the residents and traders and present the proposals in a well-founded way, we were involved in techniques and actions never before done in Portugal, which indirectly ends up influencing our knowledge, which is already vast and of an extreme suffering capacity. In my opinion, I reinforce that it is important to deal with this type of project so that our film sector can gradually gain a global dimension in accordance with our potential. In our past we have very rich stories that should be told to the whole world, but sometimes there is a lack of means, knowledge of techniques and/or investments by the entities that can support this structured growth.
João Lobão, Production Department
The Northern Regional Directorate for Culture has naturally established a close relationship with the Portugal Film Commission, aiming to the national and international recognition of the distinctive characteristics of the territory of the North of Portugal for the areas of Film and Audiovisual and seeking, on one hand, to open up work possibilities for creators and cultural agents and, on the other, to contribute to the cultural and economic dynamism of the region.
The natural and cultural, monumental and artistic heritage that exists here, the people and communities that live here, the atmosphere and the landscape, the gastronomy, the rituals and the traditions that are found here create opportunities for the cinema and the audiovisual, enhanced by the partnership with the Portugal Film Commission.
Disseminating the region and its places to serve as support for new narratives, interpretations and productions is also the aim of this Regional Directorate, which will continue to collaborate so that more creations can be filmed in the North.
Laura Castro, Director of the Northern Regional Directorate for Culture
Filming in Portugal is not easy. Each entity, city council or region has its own rules, terms and conditions. The PFC has proven to be a very useful asset, both to give credibility to Portugal as a filming destination for international producers, and to guide and advise local producers on how to navigate the numerous rules that each entity and institution has from the point of view of the filming authorization processes. It proved to be an active partner, dedicated and attentive to the needs of a production with such scale as Ready To Shoot had: “Heart of Stone” for Netflix.
Margarida Adónis, Ready to Shoot
I have been lucky and privileged to work on national and international projects within our own country. The interest of international production companies in working in Portugal, and with national actors, is evident to the naked eye. Opportunities have multiplied, and so have the learning experiences. The work that the Portugal Film Commission has done is visible, and we, the actors, are grateful for the opportunity to show our work to the world through a national initiative.
Matamba Joaquim, Actor/Writer
The Portugal Film Commission has been a key partner in showcasing the Portuguese heritage as well as the privileged locations of the Pestana Hotels and Pousadas de Portugal.
Pestana Hotel Group
Film Commissions are strategic for the sustainable development of the film and audiovisual sectors in Portugal. The work carried out by the Portugal Film Commission, along with the work of the Lisboa Film Commission, has contributed to the country’s economic growth and to job creation, as it also attracts foreign investment. I would say that we work with the same purpose of promoting and valuing the cultural and natural heritage of the country, internally and externally. In fact, the proximity of our premises allows us to maintain daily and frequent professional contact, which is an advantage for creating and maintaining synergies, as well as being very pleasant due to the professionalism and friendliness of the team. It is expected, and above all desirable, that the work being done by the Portugal Film Commission and the renewal of the Tourism and Film Fund will continue to attract new productions to Portugal that would otherwise pass us by.
Teresa Loureiro, Lisboa Film Commission