A virgin Austrian town steals the thunder from the Swiss Alps. There’s a whopping 50 per cent subsidy in store but you have to overcome the Tirol Challenge first
SHOOTING IN THE ALPS
The Hindi film industry has a strong tradition of shooting in the Alps in Europe. Indeed, as we all know, Switzerland has unofficially named a lake in honour of Yash Chopra.
The Alps is a massive mountain chain that cuts across many countries – from Switzerland to France, Italy and Austria.
Austria’s Tirol region is the ‘land in the mountains’. This very accessible alpine landscape in Austria is ideal for film shooting, with its still unexplored authentic towns and villages tucked away between the mountains and glaciers.
But, Tirol is not unknown to Indian producers. Indeed, some 64 films have been shot in the region in the last 10 years! These include Ajay Devgan’s Raju Chacha, Krishna Vamsi’s Khadgam, Subhash Ghai’s Yuvraaj, etc.
THE NEW TIROL SUBSIDY
In May, 2009 Cine Tirol has announced a new incentive to reimburse, through grants, up to 50 per cent of eligible expenditures in Tirol. This incentive is available to both feature films and TV productions, though not to music, news, or corporate productions.
WHAT ARE THE CONDITIONS
Applicants must satisfy the Tirol Effect and the Tirol Reference.
The Tirol Effect measures the economic impact of the production on the region. This can basically be satisfied through the amount of local expenditure on local production – i.e. salaries of local talent and crew, technical equipment, support staff, etc – and on general expenditure – accommodations, food, rental fees, transportation etc.
The Tirol Reference measures the thematic relation of the production to the region. To satisfy this requirement, Tirol must clearly be identified as the location in the film and/or the film needs to contain significant aspects of Tirol’s history,
culture or landscape.
WHO CAN APPLY AND HOW
The producers can apply year-round for the subsidy. However, the subsidy is only available to experienced producers, so first-timers need not apply.
At the time of application, at least 80 per cent of the financing needs to be in place (with document proof).
The final decision will be made by the executive board of the Tirol Tourist Board upon recommendations from Cine Tirol.
HOW IS IT DISBURSED
The Tirol subsidy will be disbursed as production grant directly to the
producer. And contingent on documented progress of the project, the grant will be disbursed in three installments
PROCESS TO OBTAIN
Before filming begins, producers need to submit to Cine Tirol a completed application, the script, and the entire application package of documents. This document set, though burdensome, is essential:
• Script including copyright verification
• Shooting schedule and completion plan
Financial and distribution documents
• Complete production budget with itemization of Tirol
• Effective expenditures include names of Tirol service providers
• Financing plan including all binding financing agreements
• Distribution, sales, and licensing plan
Cast and crew documents
• Filmographies of all
• Letters of intent from director, DOP, and principal cast
• Business incorporation certificate and registration
• Previous productions
As you can see, the documents required are heavy. But, then again, so is the subsidy!
What are eligible expenditures for the Tirol incentive
Eligible expenditures in Tirol include the following:
• Film permits, location fees, props, costumes, technical equipment, accommodations, per diem fees, travel, transportation, film and sound materials, post-production, insurance, and other general expenses.
Local Technicians And Labour
• Wages for local film industry professionals hired with documentation of main residence in Tirol.
• Secondary labour costs only for Tirol residents registered with State Health Insurance.
Local Service Providers
• Invoices from local service providers and companies taxable in Tirol.
Basically, most of the local expenses in Tirol paid by the applicant should be eligible. What is not eligible is VAT and other administrative fees/general expenses.