Iceland offers Indian film-makers a warm welcome

September 21, 2016 12:00 am | Updated November 01, 2016 07:58 pm IST - Chennai:

Country of volcanoes, where ‘Dilwale’ was made, rolls out red carpet with a 20 per cent rebate

Iceland, the Nordic island nation famous for Europe’s largest glacier and some of the world’s most active volcanoes, is keen on for more people to see its picturesque locations - in Indian movies.

“Iceland is a popular location for Hollywood production houses. But we haven’t seen much interest from the Indian film industry. We want more Indian films to be shot in Iceland,” said Thorir Ibsen, Iceland’s Ambassador to India.

In a chat with The Hindu here on Tuesday, Mr. Ibsen said Iceland is offering a 20 per cent rebate to foreign production houses that shoot movies and TV programmes in the country. That is, 20 per cent of the total production cost in Iceland will be refunded. Starting next year, this will become 25 per cent.

Five Indian films have been shot in Iceland, including Shah Rukh Khan-Kajol-starrer Dilwale . “After Dilwale , there’s an increased interest among Indian tourists and film-producers in Iceland. Five more Indian production houses have expressed interest in shooting in our country,” said the Ambassador, declining to name the projects.

On Tuesday, he met a group of Tamil film producers in Chennai, and rolled out the red carpet for the regional film industry. On Wednesday, Mr. Ibsen will meet Telugu film producers in Hyderabad. “I am trying to convince them of what Iceland offers for Indian film-makers. Iceland also has a vibrant film industry which works with some of Hollywood’s biggest production houses. They could provide crews, equipment and assist in finding locations for Indian films,” he said.

Tourism is Iceland’s largest foreign exchange earner. With a population of over 300,000 the picturesque country receives 1.5 million tourists a year. The industry is growing at 16-18 per cent a year.

In 2015, over 1,000 Indian tourists travelled there and the number is expected to double this year, said the envoy.

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