Securing the correct set location is vital to the success of any motion picture. The location sets the tone (as the backdrop) for any and every shot that will form part of your movie, commercial or series. The importance of the set location is a vital component and will prove to be one of the more time consuming operations of your schedule before shooting starts.
Besides the fact that your set location has to cater for all of your equipment, it also has to be as comfortable as possible for your actors and film crew. The basics have to be covered i.e. Stable electrical connections and storage for backup equipment is needed. When securing your location, ensure that these topics are covered within your contract as any delay can prove to be costly. A remote location might work best for a motion picture or commercial (if the budget allows) but for smaller budgets you might have to consider the use of various props or back drops in order to keep your costs down. The alternative could be to make use of a sound stage.
The film industry in South Africa is growing by leaps and bounds. The approval of the R450 million Dreamworld Film City in Cape Town bears testament to the fact. Construction of the multimillion rand film studio took place on the Vergenoegd farm in Faure, approximately 45 minutes outside of Cape Town. The city of Cape Town is a virtual cornucopia of idyllic set locations and, as an added bonus, the accommodation is reasonably priced as well.
In order to encourage international film producers to consider South Africa as a location for their shoots, the South African government has set about offering various incentives to producers. With the aid of these incentives, a number of award winning movies as well as box office hits have been produced here, including District 9, Tsotsi and Blood Diamond to name a few.
As of 2009 this incentive has assisted 81 productions – 44 South African productions, 12 co-productions and 25 foreign productions.