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Going Dutch

The Netherlands, in northwestern Europe, is known for its flat landscape, canals, tulip fields, windmills and cycling routes. It has a stunning range of film locations, from broad beaches, extensive forests and water to the widest variety of architecture styles. From medieval towers, gates, streets and castles to ultramodern buildings and anonymous, ultramodern cities with international appeal. Visionary architecture, vintage-meets-contemporary fashion and interiors, street markets selling rainbows of fresh flowers, drinks at canal-side cafés are all reasons to take your production to Netherlands.

Over the ages, generations of painters and artists have ensured that the impressive meteorological play of water, land and sky came to international fame as Dutch Light. It can be admired all year: often sharp shadows, at sunset and sunrise, romantic deep red colours provide great production value. The total number of sun hours in the Netherlands is about 1,521 per year. The peaks are in the months of May and June, with over 12 hours of available light per day. In the winter, the sun shines an average of 1.3 hours a day, which is seven hours of available light.

The working culture in the Netherlands is very dynamic and flexible. The country has thousands of highly qualified, prize-winning professionals with the widest possible range of expertise from location scouts, production crew, co-production companies, casting, technical positions, post-production, animation and photography to low budget rental equipment.

Throughout the Netherlands you can find attractive, modern, well-maintained and often freely accessible spaces like parks, bridges, tunnels, beaches, tulip fields, dikes, cinemas and museums, sports fields, swimming pools, libraries and city halls. Thanks to this finely meshed infrastructure, all destinations can be reached by car from Amsterdam Schiphol airport in about two hours.

The capital Amsterdam is a cosmopolitan city known for its world famous museums, unique modern architecture, the royal palace, canals, leaning buildings, coffee shops and a vibrant Red Light District.

Outside Amsterdam, film locations of particular interest to filmmakers and photographers include Rotterdam, The Hague, Maastricht, Utrecht, Afsluitdijk, windmills, castles, palaces, breweries and North Sea beaches. The tulip farms around Lisse offer spectacular, colourful aerial shots. Amsterdam and Rotterdam are the main production centres.

When to shoot?

The Netherlands has a maritime climate. Winter (December to February) is mild with occasional frost and snowfall. Spring (March to May) is dry, with tulip fields in full bloom. Summer (June to August) is relatively mild and the best time to film for weather. Fall (September to November) is rainy.

Film Production Incentives

The new Netherlands Film Production Incentive scheme, effective since May 2014, is based on a system of cash rebate. It aims at promoting a healthy film production environment in the Netherlands and is designed to reinforce the international competitive position of the Dutch film industry as a whole.

The Netherlands Film Fund awards grants for production costs to films of cultural value. These production costs must be demonstrably spent in the Netherlands. The applicant is legally represented by a producer who has, as majority producer, been responsible for at least two film productions over the past seven years.

If the film production applied for is an international co-production, it should meet the criteria of the European Convention on Cinematographic Co-production, or the criteria of bilateral agreements with the Netherlands or agreements with the Netherlands Film Fund. The Netherlands should be one of the countries of origin among the co-producers. In order to ensure the cultural objectives of the measure, a test of qualifying characteristics will be conducted. Applications should meet at least three of the ten cultural criteria to be eligible.

The production expenses that are taken into consideration for the calculation of the financial contribution must be directly related to the filmmaking process. The Incentive guidelines indicate the specific costs that are not considered eligible, such as internal costs, financing costs and insurance costs.

The amount of the grant is determined by the production costs that are both eligible and demonstrably spent on film professionals or film companies based in the Netherlands, multiplied by 30 per cent. The maximum award is 1 million Euro per application. The maximum amount per year per applicant is 2 million Euro. A grant will only be awarded if there is a minimum of 1,00,000 Euro of eligible production spend in the Netherlands.

The new Netherlands Film Production Incentive scheme, effective since May 2014, is based on a system of cash rebate. It aims at promoting a healthy film production environment in the Netherlands and is designed to reinforce the international competitive position of the Dutch film industry as a whole.

The Netherlands Film Fund awards grants for production costs to films of cultural value. These production costs must be demonstrably spent in the Netherlands. The applicant is legally represented by a producer who has, as majority producer, been responsible for at least two film productions over the past seven years.

If the film production applied for is an international co-production, it should meet the criteria of the European Convention on Cinematographic Co-production, or the criteria of bilateral agreements with the Netherlands or agreements with the Netherlands Film Fund. The Netherlands should be one of the countries of origin among the co-producers. In order to ensure the cultural objectives of the measure, a test of qualifying characteristics will be conducted. Applications should meet at least three of the ten cultural criteria to be eligible.

The production expenses that are taken into consideration for the calculation of the financial contribution must be directly related to the filmmaking process. The Incentive guidelines indicate the specific costs that are not considered eligible, such as internal costs, financing costs and insurance costs.

The amount of the grant is determined by the production costs that are both eligible and demonstrably spent on film professionals or film companies based in the Netherlands, multiplied by 30 per cent. The maximum award is 1 million Euro per application. The maximum amount per year per applicant is 2 million Euro. A grant will only be awarded if there is a minimum of 1,00,000 Euro of eligible production spend in the Netherlands.

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