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Dubai, new theater of American blockbusters

In the most instagrammable city in the world, we don't just shoot stories. After "Star Trek", "Vanguard", "Mission Impossible", or even "Syriana", the capital of the emirate of the same name no longer has to prove its status as a competitor in Hollywood.

Filmworks, represented by Julie Smythe, is delighted to see so many big productions, more commonly known as “blockbusters”, relocate their filming to Dubai. Following the example of Star Trek, or Mission: Impossible, many are now choosing Dubai’s skyscrapers and wide roads rather than the Hollywood studios as the theater of action.

The industry, which represents no less than 2.8 billion euros worldwide, is close to 420 million in the region. The filming of Star Trek alone brought some $30 million to Dubai. A real economic challenge for the emirates, and other Gulf countries, who want to diversify their economy and become more important players in entertainment and tourism.

Reduced costs

Jamal Al Sharif, CEO of the Dubai Film & TV Commission, explains this momentum by the practical and, above all, price flexibility offered by the region’s production companies: “We had to be able to manage their production as quickly as possible, but also to lower their costs. We worked with many production companies to reduce costs by up to 40 or even 50%”.

But blockbusters are not the only production arguments in the Middle East. Many “smaller” creators, of short films for example or genre films, such as Faisal Hashmi, are very active in the region and are beginning to make their mark internationally thanks to the various festivals.