BELGRADE: The Serbian Ministry of Economy has decided to increase the total budget available for incentives from 6,752,421 EUR / 800 m RSD in 2018 to 7.5 m EUR / 900 m RSD in 2019, while the Ministry of Culture and Information and Film Center Serbia will increase the national funding for domestic films and coproductions to 9 m EUR, as compared to 7,879,811 EUR in 2018.
Over 100 projects benefited from the 25% cash rebate since its launch in April 2016 and 88.5 million EUR has been spent in Serbia so far.
Since 65 projects benefited from the cash rebate programme in 2018, almost double as in 2017, the Ministry of Economy has decided to increase the budget.
The list of international productions that were partly shot in Serbia in 2018 includes Ralph Fiennes’s The White Crow (with WiP Films servicing), Alexandre Aja’s Crawl (serviced by the Work in progress company), Jonathan English’s My Husband’s Double Life (serviced by RED Production), the Chinese production Belgrade Escape (with Emote servicing), The Islander directed by Dom Mazuran and Zoran Lisinac and serviced by Art & Popcorn, as well as the Indian productions Uri: The Surgical Strike directed by Aditya Dhar and serviced by Clockwork Film, Chekka Chivantha Vaanam directed by Mani Ratnam and serviced by Clockwork Film, and Kotigobba 3 directed by Shiva Karthik, with Family Film servicing.
Due to the no visa regime introduced for India and China, Serbia is being rediscovered by these two big markets. Belgrade Escape was the first Chinese feature to benefit from incentives, while all major film centres in Mumbai, Chennai and Bangalore experienced shooting in Serbia with over 100 shooting days in the past 12 months.
Forty projects used the cash rebate for advertising and other audiovisual projects in 2018.
With the announcement of 50 m EUR investment in Avala Studios by the new owners and management by 2022-2023, Serbia is making its way to a more competitive infrastructure as well.