Tourism minister pushes for benefits to attract foreign filmmakers

By TIN Media | Asean News Published 1 month ago on 20 February 2024
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THAILAND:

Minister Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol said on Monday that the current benefits include 20-30% money back on the investment budget of filming in Thailand.

The first portion of 20% is guaranteed payback if the film invests over 100 million baht in Thailand, she explained. The second portion of 10%, meanwhile, will be paid on certain conditions, including adding elements of “Thainess” in the film, filming in second-tier provinces up to 50% of shooting time, and hiring Thai employees as part of the crew.

All these benefits are however capped under 750 million baht of investment.

Sudawan said the ministry is considering removing the 750-million-baht cap, which would attract more large-scale filmmakers, as well as adding other benefits to sweeten the deals.

“Having more international films shot in Thailand would help promote the country’s image as a tourist destination, as well as boost the economy,” she said. “Film crews spending months in Thailand means more spending with local entrepreneurs. And, after the film is in the theatres, viewers will be motivated to visit Thailand to witness the real location. This happened with the hit movie ‘The Beach’ which was shot in Krabi about 20 years ago.”

The Tourism and Sports Ministry is preparing to propose greater fringe benefits for foreign filmmakers who use Thailand as a location for their productions, a move that would help promote the country’s soft power in the film industry, as well as boost demand from tourists.
Minister Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol said on Monday that the current benefits include 20-30% money back on the investment budget of filming in Thailand.

Tourism minister pushes for benefits to attract foreign filmmakers

The first portion of 20% is guaranteed payback if the film invests over 100 million baht in Thailand, she explained. The second portion of 10%, meanwhile, will be paid on certain conditions, including adding elements of “Thainess” in the film, filming in second-tier provinces up to 50% of shooting time, and hiring Thai employees as part of the crew.

All these benefits are however capped under 750 million baht of investment.

Tourism minister pushes for benefits to attract foreign filmmakers

Sudawan said the ministry is considering removing the 750-million-baht cap, which would attract more large-scale filmmakers, as well as adding other benefits to sweeten the deals.

“Having more international films shot in Thailand would help promote the country’s image as a tourist destination, as well as boost the economy,” she said. “Film crews spending months in Thailand means more spending with local entrepreneurs. And, after the film is in the theatres, viewers will be motivated to visit Thailand to witness the real location. This happened with the hit movie ‘The Beach’ which was shot in Krabi about 20 years ago.”


Tourism minister pushes for benefits to attract foreign filmmakers

The topic of shooting foreign movies in Thailand has made headlines this month following the announcement that Thailand’s very own K-pop princess Lalisa “Lisa” Manoban would make her acting debut in the third season of HBO’s dark comedy TV series “The White Lotus”.

Filming for the third season will kick off this month, with production set in Bangkok, Phuket and Koh Samui. The series is expected to hit the screens in 2025.

Lisa is a member of the K-pop all-girl band Blackpink.

Sudawan said revenue from foreign filmmakers in 2019, before the pandemic, was 4.46 billion baht. In 2021, that grew to around 5 billion and then reached 6 billion baht in 2022 and 2023.


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