Bollywood’s growing fascination of filming in UK

The UK has become the destination of choice for many global film-makers, and Bollywood is quick to make use of it by making it an ideal destination for filming.

The Office for National Statistics in UK also reported that movie production in the UK has grown 72% since 2014.

Last year, £1.3bn was spent by foreign filmmakers in Britain, according to the British Film Institute (BFI).

There are a few reasons which make Britain allure for overseas film-makers – tax breaks, the weak pound making it cheaper to film here, a readily available pool of skilled crew, plus the historic locations.

In the past, Bollywood film-makers recreated British castles or stately homes in state-of-the-art studios in India but now they are increasingly using the real backdrops.

Director Reema Kagti, who is currently working on her upcoming movie, ‘Gold’, revealed that she choose UK for this because it’s a period film.

“I needed architecture that existed before the ’30s and has been maintained till date.”

“They love the authenticity of shooting here. My experience of them is it’s as cheap to film here as it is in India now, and they can actually film the locations for real,” added Reema Kagti.

Apart from London, Yorkshire and Humber are growing increasingly as preferable spot for filming.  

Gold’s Location Manager, Martin Walker said, “Unit bases – spaces big enough to get all your big facilities and trucks in – are becoming fewer and fewer as they get developed on or sold out from underneath us, and some of us London-based location managers do worry about how viable London will be in the future as a place to shoot if you cannot physically service your shoot by having your vehicles close by.”

Getting out of London has other advantages. “You’ve got your hotel costs which are half price, you’ve got great transport links, and you’ve actually got a population who still finds filming interesting and fun and fascinating and are helpful,” he explains.

There were around 22 Indian movies filmed in UK in 2015-17.