Foreign Films Head to Malta

By FNE Staff

    Malta is hosting a full slate of European film productions in 2011, beginning with the latest French film from the Asterix and Obelix series, God Save Britannia. Also heading for Malta is the Sinbad the Sailor TV series, followed by films from Italy and a History Channel documentary.

    The Times of Malta reports that Film Commissioner Luisa Bonello noted an "unprecedented level of incoming productions" which would encourage growth in the film services sector.

    However, insdustry professionals have expressed concern that the amount of films scheduled to shoot in Malta in 2011 could be more than the industry can handle, with few professionals trained at a high international level. According to producer Malcolm Scerri-Ferrante, estimates that there are about 15 full time freelancers and another 30-40 who work in the TV industry. As a result, his company, Producer's Creative Partnership (PCP), has launched an open application process to find potenial crew members.

    Malta's 2011 influx of films comes as a result of introducing film incentives and building on the success of film production services in recent years, including 2010's The Devil's Double and 2008's Agora. The Mediterranean Film Studio's water tanks are another big draw. The Asterix and Obelix film will begin shooting there in April.