Ireland’s forestry service has branched out into the movie business, aiming to grow revenue by becoming the country’s biggest supplier of outdoor TV and film locations.
If it succeeds, it could also boost Ireland’s tourist industry, as one fifth of overseas visitors come here after seeing the country portrayed on screen.
Arts and Heritage Minister Jimmy Deenihan yesterday launched an online portfolio of Coillte properties designed to woo Hollywood movie makers and television broadcasters.
The website, CoillteOnFilm.ie, was developed by TV and film marketing company O’Carroll Mulhern Services and is dedicated to showcasing Coillte properties to the film, television, and event industries. Coillte aims to become Ireland’s biggest provider of outdoor film locations by 2018.
The website showcases a nationwide portfolio of 25 Coillte properties that have been selected as ideal filming locations, providing key information to overseas film production companies, as well as highlighting the Irish landscape.
Coillte, which has 10 forest parks and more than 150 recreation sites, already captures revenue from the licensing of sites as filming locations, but it is expected that the online portfolio initiative will substantially increase those revenues.
Mr Deenihan said the project would boost one of the country’s most successful business sectors.
“Ireland has long been a popular location for TV and film production,” said Mr Deenihan. “The natural beauty of the country providing a backdrop to some of the most popular TV shows.
“In 2012, there were 22 feature film projects produced in Ireland and the film and television industry is worth approximately €550m annually in Ireland supporting about 6,500 full-time jobs. By increasing the opportunities to showcase Ireland as a real space to film we can continue to make the film industry one of our most successful industries.”
Fáilte Ireland estimates that 20% of tourists visit Ireland as a direct result of seeing images of the country on screen and such “film induced tourism” is estimated to be worth €350m a year to the Irish economy.
Mark Foley, MD of Coillte’s Enterprise Division, said the launch of CoillteOnFilm.ie will help maximise the opportunities to bring TV and film productions to Ireland. “This is another example of how Coillte is constantly seeking new ways to capitalise on our expansive woodland resources, in this case through a partnership model with industry leaders,” said Mr Foley.
“By creating a one-stop shop for industry, we can ensure that TV and film producers can continue to bring shows of the calibre of Tudors, Vikings, and Moone Boy to Ireland.”
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