Discover two home-grown German regions that will floor the filmmaker with history, landscaped art and cultural pizzaz
This week, we tour two of Germany’s most picturesque destinations, namely Lower Saxony and Bremen. These regions are handled by the Nordmedia Film Commission to make film shooting hassle-free for international productions.
Lower Saxony touches the North Sea and embraces urban settlements like Hanover, Braunschweig, Lüneburg, Göttingen and Oldenburg to name a few. Its capital Hanover carries forward its opulent culture from the 13th century, when it was a small village. Today, this urban settlement markedly juxtaposes old and new architecture coupled with varied traditions of the multifarious populace.
One of the main locales here is the European baroque-style garden, Great Garden. The metropolis plays perfect host to its travellers by keeping their itinerary chock-full with beautiful sites of interest. Hanover is packed with luscious green gardens, which enclose the Leibniz Temple, Georgen Palace and Guelph Palace.
Other landmarks are the New Town Hall and the Old Town district. The former has four scale models of the city, while Old Town with its rustic description – cobblestoned streets, antique lampposts, bistros and esplanades – makes the panorama of the city even more attractive.
The next stopover is Braunschweig, which consists of a number of great buildings with strong cultural and ethnic confluence. The gargantuan list includes the Cathedral (St Blasius, built at the end of the 12th century), the Burg Dankwarderode (a 19th-century reconstruction of the old castle of Henry the Lion), the Neo-Gothic Town Hall, as well as some half-timbered houses.
Göttingen, like many other towns in Germany, has brick-walled edifices and labyrinthine lanes and by-lanes decorated with overhanging balconies. It is also known as the ‘university town’. On the other hand, Oldenburg is an independent city and is the fourth-largest in the Lower Saxony region. The place is an agricultural hub and has farms stretching from one corner to the other. These cattle and crop farms form an incredible backdrop for film shootings.
Lüneburg, like Bremen, is a Hanseatic city (an economic alliance of trading cities and their guilds that dominated trade along the coast of Northern Europe). The historic districts amalgamated with the town districts complete the locales of Lüneburg. A cul-de-sac in Lüneburg, the historic town, which itself appears as an open-air museum, St Nicholas’ Church and red-stoned houses are postcard perfect.
Bremen is a municipality and with Bremerhaven, it comprises the state of Bremen. Many of the main sights of Bremen are located in Altstadt (Old Town). The market square has an assortment of magnificent facades but is dominated by the Renaissance-style Town Hall. A 16th century Flemish-inspired guild hall, Schütting; an impressive Cathedral St. Petri and a small yet well-maintained crooked lane, Schnoor tucked away
between the cathedral and the river are ideal retreats for picnickers. By and large, Bremen is a complete experience – from massive skyscrapers to boulevards, walkways beside the river, old-town charm and high living standards, the city is a perfect tourist attraction.
These regions have all kinds of settings enclosed within their boundaries that can don any look for a film. With so many surroundings and state-of-the-art technologies and facilities available, these areas are just the thing. All this attached with free services and funding scheme provided by the film commission makes it a worthwhile investment.
The Nordmedia Film Commission offers comprehensive services and provides advice to national and international producers who wish to shoot in the regions of Lower Saxony and Bremen. It bases its service mainly on a strong network of regional experts of the local government. The Film Commission supports filmmakers in finding suitable locations or equipment and personnel and helps with obtaining filming permits and many other organisational aspects. Free access is given to nordmedia’s updated and easy-to-use service tools, including the Location Guide.
Objects of Funding
The funding scheme is the central concern of Nordmedia, not only as a provider of funding but also as a partner in all phases of realisation of creative projects. All projects that promote locations either culturally or economically are eligible for funding. Grants may be awarded in the areas of script and project development, production, distribution, copying and sales.
Condition: Funds are only granted to applicants on condition that the sum awarded is at least 100-per cent disbursed in either Niedersachsen or Bremen.
Screenplay and material development: Funds may be granted up to a maximum of 25,000 Euros. Applying authors are eligible for 100 per cent of the calculated screenplay costs, applying producers up to 90 per cent. Scriptwriter remuneration is granted up to a maximum of 12,000 Euros for a period of six months.
Project Development: Funds may be granted to producers of up to 80 per cent of the calculated costs of the pre-production (max 1,00,000 Euros): options on rights, dramaturgical consultation, (location) research, casting, fundraising etc.
Production: Funds may be granted to producers of up to 50 per cent (up to 80 per cent in special cases) of the budget. Repaid funds are available as success loans to the producer upon application. In justified exceptional cases funds may be granted for post-production or digitalisation work.
Distribution, Sales and Marketing: Funds may be granted to distributors and self-distributing producers of up to 80 per cent of the calculated costs for distribution and sales campaigns.
Presentation: Funds may be granted for presentation projects, especially film festivals.