Jadran film has a long-standing tradition of film production and has served as location for such classics as Norman Jewison’s Fiddler on the Roof(1971), Sam Peckinpah’s Cross of Iron (1977), Volker Schlöndorff’s Tin Drum (1979) and Alan J. Pakula’s Sophie’s Choice (1982).
As a filming destination, Croatia offers good value for money. Croatia’s production facilities are first-class: studios as well as equipment rentals. In addition, Croatia has highly skilled film crews fluent in English with long track records in feature and commercial productions, both domestic and international. And all of that at very competitive rates.
At the moment, Croatia can easily accommodate 2 or 3 fully big international productions at one time. It is our hope that, upon the introduction of the tax rebate for film and TV production, this number will increase, because higher volume of work will eventually lead to a higher number of skilled technicians.
In summer 2007 the Croatian Parliament passed a new Film Act, underlining its commitment to boosting the country’s creative industries. Right from the start, one of the key strategic goals of the newly founded governing film body was to set up a viable legislative frame facilitating inward investment and putting Croatia back on the European and world map of production.
Cash Rebate for Film and Television Production
From January 2012 Croatia is introducing a Cash Rebate for film and television productions made in Croatia.
Projects can derive a benefit of up to 20% of their qualifying expenditure. There is a ceiling of 20m HRK (cca €2.65m) on qualifying local expenditure per project. The minimum local spend per project is HRK 2m (cca €265,000) for Feature Films, HRK 300.000,00 (cca €40,000) for Documentaries, HRK 500.000,00 (cca €66,000) for Animations, HRK 1m (cca €133,000) for TV films, HRK 750.000,00 (cca €100,000) for each TV episode.The Rebate applies to Feature Films, Documentaries, Short Films, Television Drama and Animation. The Rebate does not apply to Commercials, Reality tv, Game Shows and Soaps
The benefit is based on the cost of Croatian cast and crew working in Croatia, as well as goods and services purchased in Croatia.
The foreign producer must team up with a local Croatian co-producer or production service provider. The Croatian company applies for a provisional certificate before the start of production, and for a final certificate upon completion of the production in Croatia. The Croatian partner is responsible for compliance with prescribed formal requirements. The Croatian partner provides the full range of production services including locations scouting, scheduling, budgeting, casting, crewing and takes full responsibility for all production services carried out in the State throughout the life-span of the production.The net benefit will be made available on completion of production, audit of the final cost statement and evidence that all the requirements have been met.The Croatian cultural test comprises three categories: ‘cultural content’, ‘creative talents’ and ‘production’.
1970’s and 1980’s
Some of the best-known known films of the 1970s and 1980s were shot on location in Croatia: starting with Norman Jewison’s Oscar winningFiddler on the Roof (1971), Sam Peckinpah WWII action drama Cross of Iron (1977) followed by Volker Schlöndorff’s Oscar-winning Tin Drum(1979), István Szabó’s Oscar contender Colonel Redl (1985), Alan J. Pakula’s Sophie’s Choice (1982), Tom Stoppard’s only foray into directing Rosenkrantz and Guildernstern Are Dead (1990), starring two then relatively unknown British actors Garry Oldman and Tim Roth, and ABC’s multiple Emmy Award winning mini-series The Winds of War(1983) and its sequel War and Remembrance (1988).
Selection of Films
Fiddler on the Roof, Norman Jewison (1971)
Cross of Iron, Sam Peckinpah (1977)
The Tin Drum (Die Blechtrommel), Volker Schlöndorff (1979)
Sophie’s Choice, Alan J. Pakula (1982)
The Winds of War (1983), TV mini-series
Mehmed My Hawk ,Peter Ustinov (1984)
Armour of God (Long xiong hu di): Jackie Chan (1987)
War and Remembrance (1988): TV mini-series
Rosenkrantz and Guildernstern are Dead,
Tom Stoppard (1990)
For a relatively small country, Croatia offers a wide variety of geographical and cultural locations. Especially interesting are 1,200 islands along the Adriatic coast; the karst limestone land formations of the coastal hinterland; the Istrian peninsula…
Croatia is a country that boasts breathtaking landscapes comprising of Adriatic islands, mountains and spectacular waterfalls, to name some. Historically, the country has always stood at the crossroads of Eastern and Western cultures, and even nowadays it stays true to its designation as a meeting point of different cultures. Indeed, it is a space where the Roman rubs with the Medieval and Renaissance and the best of the Baroque, peacefully co-existing with the 19th century Austro-Hungarian architecture and design and the best examples of the post WWII design, such as the newly restored Tito’s villas in Split and the Brioni archipelago off the Western coast of Istria, which stand testimony to more recent times and customs. Such a varied and eclectic sample of possible filming locations is not common.
Croatia is also one of the rare countries that boasts such an amazing mixture of different climates: continental, Mediterranean and mountainous, and all that in the radius of less of 200 kilometres. In practical terms, this means that it is enough for the film crew to be placed, for example, in the city of Sinj (an hour car drive from the seaside, but also an hour car drive from the mountains covered by snow) in order to be able to film three completely different seasons and landscapes if needed.
In the early 1960s, a Berlin based production company, Rialto, decided to adapt for the screen a series of adventure novels by the German author Karl May, set in the American Old West. The novels, hugely popular in Europe since they first appeared at the beginning of the 20th century, featured a noble Apache chieftain Winnetou and his loyal white sidekick Old Shatterhand. The first film in the series was shot entirely in Croatia and released under the title The Treasure of Silver Lake / Der Schatz im Silbersee in 1962. The Treasure of the Silver Lake was a success at the European box office and was followed by another eight films in the Winnetou series, all filmed in spectacular locations in southern Croatia.
At the same time, in the early 1960s, far from the rugged landscape of southern Croatia, film production was also booming in the Croatian capital, the genteel central European city of Zagreb. There, on the backlots of Jadran Film Studios, it would have been easy to imagine that you had stumbled into a scene from ancient Rome, Babylon or Alexandria. Jadran Film’s backlots were in those days a thriving film city, an off-shoot of the biggest and busiest film studio in Europe at the time: Rome’s Cinecittà. Dozens of popular historical, mythological and Biblical epics were shot at Jadran Film Studios at a fast, even dizzying, turnaround rate.
Of the many forgettable B-movies shot in Croatia in the 1960s, two films stand out. One is French master director Abel Gance’s last film everAusterliz (1960) featuring Orson Welles in one of his numerous acting roles at the time. Welles was so pleased with his experience in Croatia that he returned two years later, in 1962 to Zagreb to film part of his screen adaptation of Kafka’s The Trial.
Selection of Films
Austerlitz, Abel Gance (1960)
David and Goliath (David e Golia), Ferdinando Baldi,
Richard Pottier (1960)
The Tartars (I tartari), Ferdinando Baldi,
Richard Thorpe (1961)
The Trial, Orson Welles (1962)
Winnetou, Harald Reinl (1963)