Throughout the years, Malta has managed to attract a number of high-profile film productions. Productions choose Malta because of its unique combination of great locations, excellent crew and service, the world-renowned water tanks and a strong cash rebate programme.
We are working to create a world-class film industry in Malta, turning the industry from a seasonal one to having back-to-back productions throughout the year; where occasional job opportunities are turned into careers for the many not the few.
It’s a bold ambition and we are determined to achieve our dream. It’s not an easy journey, especially during these times we live in, where COVID-19 has impacted the industry globally.
Since July 2020, with the re-opening of our airport and ports, we have kept servicing back-to-back film and TV productions. We kept creating jobs. The local film industry kept working, even during the tough times of the pandemic.
In the last seven months, we continued attracting big films and TV series. The Jurassic World: Dominion blockbuster movie poured millions of euros into our economy with more than 1,300 crew and extras working here. And we are so proud that, for the first time in our blockbuster filming history, Malta did not double up for another country but is mentioned as Malta in the script of the latest Jurassic World instalment.
Once again, Malta has shown its potential, its resilience and its capabilities to the world
We have just wrapped up one of the biggest-ever series produced on our islands, Foundation, which was the first time Apple TV have brought a production to Malta. Currently, this is one of the biggest TV projects in Europe, with over €10 million spent in Malta in just four months, creating over 1,000 jobs for crew members and extras.
It wasn’t easy to get all these productions to Malta. But we did it because we have always been proactive in our determination to make things happen. We are doing it because we worked as one with the government and together with the Superintendent of Public Health, we designed clear and robust COVID protocols to facilitate productions in Malta.
Once again, Malta has shown its potential, its resilience and its capabilities to the world. Our local film industry keeps attracting more people to work within it. That’s what we mean by turning the industry from a seasonal one to having back-to-back productions shooting in Malta.
The challenges are clear. But we are committed to making our film industry more inclusive, both in front of and behind the camera. The master plan of the Malta Film Studios, a €35 million project, which has been launched by the Minister for Tourism Clayton Bartolo, will modernise our film facilities, which include the building of the first soundstages in Malta.
This ambitious project will strengthen Malta’s proposition to global film-makers and is one of the main pillars of our vision to create a world-class film industry in Malta.
We are not just investing in our film studio buildings, we are investing in our people too. Supporting the generation to come. We want to create full-year employment in the film industry and an infrastructure that is self-sustained.
Moreover, we need to ensure that the creative industries remain part of the ‘build back better’ project and are recognised as a crucial part of our economic and social infrastructure.
Yes, we are determined to keep our film industry working and will not stop dreaming to achieve more. It’s a long journey to walk, not an easy one to take but we have made some great strides forward.
And we are committed to reach our ambition – to create a world-class film industry in Malta.
Johann Grech is Malta Film Commissioner
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