Destinations compete for attention of Travelers everywhere: billboards, newspaper supplements, online advertisements – and even in cinema. In fact, cinema is the best way to showcase any country’s locations, and if the movie goes on to become a massive hit, you can expect tourists to flow in for several years to come.
And this is not just true of Bollywood films, it applies to Hollywood films as well. And no country knows this better than New Zealand, where the huge success of the Lord of the Rings franchise, helped turn the country into one of the world’s most sought after travel destinations.
Countries know this, and they’re actively looking at opportunities to attract big films so that even they can grab a piece of this lucrative film tourism business.
We’re witnessing a similar trend in India as well, where movies influence the travel decisions of most couples/families. And the trend continues not just abroad, but within India too. Here are some examples.
- Cities like Paris and Amsterdam are back among the top destinations, after “Queen” said Dhall.
- Post the release of Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, bookings to Spain increased. Same happened to Ireland after “Ek Tha Tiger”.
- Krrish was one of the movies that took advantage of Singapore’s tax incentives offered to international film productions, and the number of Indians visiting Singapore increased immediately after its release.
- Post the release of Highway, interest in places like Himachal Pradesh, Leh and Kashmir shot up.
- Post the release of Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, there was an increase in the number of people opting for Manali as their travel destination (the movie was shot in Gulmarg but was shown as being set in Manali).
- The movie Dedh-Ishqiya (starring Madhuri Dixit) was shot in Uttar Pradesh (UP), and although it has not driven hoardes of tourists to the state yet, the UP government is doing its bit to promote the state for film tourism. The UP government had contributed Rs. one crore towards the making of ‘Dedh Ishqiya’ in a bid to attract more producers to shoot their films in Uttar Pradesh.
Film tourism is a win-win situation for several industries, as it positively impacts Tourism, training, jobs, revenue.
Post the stupendous success of 2009 film ‘Avatar’, a tourist agency in China started luring tourists to a mountainous area [Zhangjiajie National Forest Park] in the Hunan province, which has similarities to the floating mountains seen in Avatar. They even went as far as re-naming one of the peaks as ‘Avatar Hallelujah Mountain’. And what’s the reality? The fact is that the film ‘Avatar’ was created almost entirely by CGI.
However, just because a film shows beautiful locations of a country, is no guarantee that it will attract thousands of tourists (even with better marketing).
Its important that the audience get a cohesive experience – great story, great characters & the backdrop – for it to make an impact! Film tourism can be a highly emotional experience; you can see people re-enacting scenes, role-playing (even shedding a tear), based on the powerful, personal experiences that some of the films have left on the audience.
Lord of the rings (NewZealand), Slumdog Millionaire (Mumbai), Lost in Translation (Tokyo), Notting Hill (West London) are some great examples of films that succeed on all counts. In recent times, 12 Years A Slave (shot in Louisiana), and the movie Nebraska might generate interest in visiting the relevant locations. Read full story here…
Akshay Kumar’s film ‘Baby’ was shot in various foreign locations
The movie (to be directed by Neeraj Pandey) was shot in various parts of Nepal, Istanbul, Oman and Abu Dhabi. The crew shot in Oman, Abu Dhabi and Istanbul.
SRK’s ‘Fan’ was shot at various Exotic Locations
The action scenes of SRK’s Fan was filmed in Zagreb, Hvar, and Dubrovnik in Croatia (Amsterdam in the Netherlands; and Edinburgh in Scotland were also considered) for filming.