About filming in Colombia
Colombia is without doubt one of the most cost effective places to film in. For example a first class DOP's fee is around 1000 USD/day and an electrician is 150 USD/day. Feature film rates are significantly cheaper. Hotels are between 100 and 200 USD/night, top models are around 1200 USD/day and extras are 50 USD/day. A local beer is 1 USD and a 3-course meal with wine in a top restaurant is around 40 USD. VAT is 16%. Productions deemed as an 'export' do not need to pay this tax.
Crews are flexible when it comes to working overtime and they will do their best to carry out anything within reason. There are no unions in Colombia waiting to squeeze producers for every bit of overtime. Colombian crews are known to be very hard workers and very good spirited. Their film experience is very strong mainly due to a healthy Colombian film industry which keeps them busy in between service jobs.
The government is presently considering passing a law allowing a Cash Rebate of between 20 to 40% to foreign productions. Currently investors in Colombian films benefit from a tax credit of 41%.
There are sound stages in Bogota. Elsewhere warehouses are turned into makeshift stages.
Colombia has a violent history like most other nations but the present situation is very far from the past. All foreign filmmakers and actors who worked in Colombia will testify that the country feels very safe and in fact it does not pose any more significant threats then large first-world cities.
From 35mm, Alexa, Red, Sony, Panasonic - Colombia has it all thanks to its leading equipment house Congo Films. There is also a Milo, Technocrane, Remote Heads, Camera Aerial Systems etc. HMI, Tungsten and the standard range of lighting and silent generators exist in Colombia. Any specific or surplus equipment can easily be flown in from nearby Miami since flights are under three hours.
LAB & POST
There is a Kodak film laboratory as well as first class post-production facilities with Da Vinci, Avid, Pro-Tools, Dolby etc. Both Kodak and Fuji stock are available. The majority of Colombian films are now filming on HD and post facilities are well equipped for this.
Colombia is very diverse in its locations ranging from tropical beaches to deserts, mountains, green countryside, jungle and all sorts of modern and old character streets. The diversity and accessibility is hard to compare with other countries.
Click here for a sample of the wide variety of locations available.
Colombia has a tropical, non-seasonal climate. Bogota's weather base tends to be more wet then dry whilst Cartagena's tends to be dry. The days are long and the overall weather is very much like a never ending spring. When it rains, it tends to be fast and quick. The advantage of such a climate is that filming is very manageable all year round.
Comprehensive weather statistics for Bogota, Cartagena, Cali, Medellin