Action movie filming in Bahrain delayed
Manama, June 23, 2013
Production of an action-spy movie that will be partially filmed in Bahrain has been rescheduled due to delays in plans to set up a 20,000 sq m film studio and academy in the kingdom, a report said.
The Bahrain Film Studio and Academy was due to be built by the end of the year, but a suitable location has still not been earmarked, according to the report in the Gulf Daily News, our sister publication.
It has forced London-based Twickenham Films and its sister company Oasis Films to push filming of film Bulldog Drummond: Hero for Hire until next year.
The company, which is the production arm of Twickenham Film Group, has been re-branded and is now called Gulf Atlantic Studios with its production arm called Gulf Atlantic Pictures.
It earlier said the project will also include a film student exchange programme with Wales.
It has also been working with Bahrain's Economic Development Board (EDB) to develop a tax rebate scheme for production companies wishing to film in the country.
"We are scheduling to shoot the Gulf scenes of Bulldog Drummond: Hero for Hire next year in Bahrain, with the UK scenes being shot prior. The film will be marked for a 2015 release," said Gulf Atlantic Pictures executive producer James Black.
"In the meantime, my production associate in Bahrain, David Hollywood is working full speed with the EDB in order to create the Gulf Atlantic Pictures production facility as soon as possible.
"We are proposing to the government to create a film tax rebate similar to those that already existing in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Qatar. Film rebates which exist in many countries around the world are what attract film makers to the country."
Black explained the rebate system used in the UK should be taken as an example.
"The UK has a 20 per cent film tax credit, meaning a film completely shot in the UK on a 10 million pound budget gets two million back from the government," he said.
"Abu Dhabi gives a 30 per cent rebate. We are also recommending to the Bahrain government the creation of Film Bahrain - an official body to promote Bahrain globally to film and television producers."
Hollywood action hero Jason Statham could play the title role in the $35 million production. The 45-year-old British star is famous for his roles in movies like Snatch and Transporter.
Captain Hugh "Bulldog" Drummond is a fictional character created by author and former soldier Herman Cyril McNeile, who used the pseudonym Sapper.
He first appeared in print in 1920 and went on to be featured in around 20 novels.
He is regarded as a forerunner to Ian Fleming's James Bond and some think the latter was actually influenced by McNeile's character, a wealthy former First World War officer who spent his time looking for adventure as a private detective.
More than 20 Bulldog Drummond films were made between the 1920s and 1960s and he was also the basis of a radio series throughout the 1940s. – TradeArabia News Service