20-02-2020

Film incentives in the Czech Republic in 2019 attracted almost CZK 9 billion (USD 393 million / EUR 363 million) in expenditures; interest in filming continues to rise

Daniel Radcliffe in Miracle Workers Dark Ages Daniel Radcliffe in Miracle Workers Dark Ages © Stanislav Honzik

Thanks to film incentives, nearly 80 films and series were shot in the Czech Republic in 2019. Implementation of projects brought revenues of almost CZK 9 billion (USD 393 million / EUR 363 million) to the Czech economy. A large portion of this comprises series filmed for online platforms such as Netflix or Amazon.

"We have calculated the revenue from projects filmed in the Czech Republic last year at CZK 8.9 billion. Foreign productions alone almost doubled compared with 2018, and are at their absolute peak since we began following this indicator. For the state it is most advantageous to provide as many film incentives as possible because higher incentives generate higher returns for the Czech economy," said Helena Bezděk Fraňková, director of the Czech Film Fund.

Among the most significant projects filmed in 2019 in the Czech Republic were major television series such as the second season of Carnival Row for Amazon and the epic fantasy The Wheel of Time for Amazon and Sony. Filming of both series will continue this year. The family film A Boy Called Christmas, the fantasy series The Letter for the King, and the sci-fi drama Tribes of Europa were all filmed in the Czech Republic for Netflix. Other productions included the mystery thriller Shadowplay, the second season of the wartime drama Das Boot, as well as the second season of Miracle Workers starring Steve Buscemi and Daniel Radcliffe. 

Over the past two years, the pressure to produce audiovisual content has increased worldwide. Individual countries have begun responding flexibly, introducing film incentives in places where they previously didn’t work, and increasing the percentages. Head of the Czech Film Commission Pavlina Žipková confirms this increase in foreign productions, particularly television series: "In 2018, series made up about 65% of the total; in 2019 that increased to nearly 80%. More and more often, entire series are filmed here, not just several or even individual episodes, as was the case in the past. The primary attraction for foreign producers is and will be film incentives – there's no question. But the wide variety of Czech locations, the architectural diversity, and more also play a huge role, not to mention our highly-skilled Czech craftsmen. Our film professionals are some of the best in the world – Czechs excel not only in directorial positions but also in individual production departments." 

In 2019, the Czech Film Fund paid a total of CZK 1.2 billion (USD 52.4 million / EUR 48.3 million) in incentives to 71 projects. This total includes projects that were filmed in the Czech Republic in previous years, such as the first season of Carnival Row with Hollywood megastar Orlando Bloom (filmed for Amazon in 2017-2019). This project is also the current record holder, incurring almost CZK 1.7 billion (USD 74.2 million / EUR 68.5 million) of eligible costs. The Czech Film Fund refunded an amount of CZK 296 million (USD 13 million / EUR 12 million) to the project. Film productions spend much more in the Czech Republic than only eligible costs, such as expenses that are not eligible under the incentive system, as well as private expenses incurred by actors and crew members. 

In 2019, the Czech Film Fund received 117 applications for registration of new projects that would be filmed here. These included not just turnkey production for international projects, but also co-production projects. In comparison, in 2018, 112 applications were received and 76 in 2017.

International productions spent over 1400 shooting days in the Czech Republic last year making it over 400 more than in 2018. Interest in filming in the Czech Republic continues to rise.

Last modified on 21-02-2020