25 January 2018 – Film Fiji today confirmed that 74 productions were shot in Fiji in 2017, topping the 2016 record of 57 productions. It was a stellar year for high quality productions with budgetary value of over $300million. An estimated $125million of that was spent directly into the Fijian economy, generating new economic activity of about $350million.
There were 13 major productions included the upcoming feature film, Adrift, starring Hollywood stars Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin. The film was shot in the greater Suva area and parts of Rakiraki. Another major feature film shot in Suva and the West was the highly anticipated, soon to be released Indian movie, Party, which included stars of the highest grossing Indian movie in history, Baahubali – Sathyaraj and Ramya Krishnan.
Reality TV juggernaut, Survivor US, continued its production for another year. Fiji and especially the Mamanuca Islands is the most used location in the history of the show. Jeff Probst, the long standing host of the show, in a widely televised interview with Entertainment Weekly, said that Fiji was “our home” and that he hoped that they stay here forever. Survivor US is aired in 130 countries with a viewership of over 110 million people.
In addition, a popular comedy TV series, Wrecked (Season 2), shot in Sigatoka and Nadi, aired on popular American cable TV network, Turner Broadcasting System (TBS) on 20 June 2017, to over a million viewers.
Other major productions were from Australia and Europe, including France’s very popular, long running Koh Lanta TV series, which had an average viewership of 5.1million in France alone. The series was shot in the Yasawa Islands with the location’s beach described by show host Denis Brogniart as “the most beautiful in the history of the show”.
Film Fiji CEO Mr. Dallas Foon said, “It has been an extremely busy but outstanding year for the audio visual industry. The huge support from the Fijian Government and stakeholders has been the key to making Fiji a popular filmmaking destination”.
Minister for Industry, Trade, Tourism, Lands and Mineral Resources, Honourable Faiyaz Koya, said, “the industry has seen exponential growth in a short period of time and the success of 2017 is a testimony to the dedication and hardwork of all stakeholders involved. I am confident that this trend will continue and ultimately position Fiji as the most sought-after film location in the world.”
Mr. Foon added that Film Fiji had already approved and confirmed 7 major productions for 2018 and were looking forward to another very busy year of film activity.