New regime looks to international shoots

Serbia has largely been off the global locations map for nearly 20 years as the combined affects of civil war and Slobodan Milosevic’s repressive rule kept international producers away. But now, with a European Union-leaning democratic regime, a thriving domestic film industry, new state-of-the-art production facilities, tax-shelter laws in the pipeline and locations barely seen on Western screens for decades, the country is reaching out for international shoots.

As Miroljub Vuckovic, acting head of the Serbian Film Center, puts it: “The code has been changed. Welcome to the age of positive changes.”

The war — fought mostly in Bosnia and Croatia — has done little to scar an ancient landscape bisected by rivers that include the Danube and Sava, and which features hills and plains and scores of medieval monasteries and castles.

Hot spot: PFI Studios has recently opened just outside Belgrade, with nine soundstages and a 30-acre backlot. It also boasts production offices; dressing rooms; makeup and hair services; wardrobe and storage facilities; costume collection; props and set construction workshops and storage; and equipment rental, repair and storage facilities.

Key contacts: Check out the USAID-backed Film in Serbia website for a wealth of information on shooting in Serbia (filminserbia.com), while Vuckovic, acting head of the Film Center Serbia, will guide any production in the country.

Film Center Serbia: fcs.rs/eng

PFI Studios: pfistudios.com

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