Over the last decade and a half the overseas film industry has flooded Cape Town with business and foreign currency. Creating a massive new resource of employment and putting the beautiful mother city on the map. Industries affected by this influx of work range from catering to drivers and every technical department imaginable in between. Foreign film industries are attracted not only by the low cost of producing films here but also by the unique and varied scenery. The climate in the Western Cape which resembles that of the Mediterranean region provides perfect conditions for filming outdoors during the summer months which is the off season, winter, in the Northern hemisphere. It is said that the natural lighting too is unique and of a quality that cannot be reproduced in a studio.
Companies offering helicopter tours of Cape Town have also experienced a huge surge in business for both technical flights and charter travel. Where the Hollywood film set goes the celebrities are bound to follow, many of these celebrities will expect to be taken care of by helicopter charter travel. There is also the technical aspect that helicopter tours of Cape Town can provide to film makers. Before production starts there is the benefit of being able to survey the landscape and choose filming locations. Once filming starts they can also be used to create sweeping landscape shots. Many companies that offer helicopter flights and tours of Cape Town will, just like the tour guides, give their time and resources over to the film industry. It pays better and can provide a more secure form of income for a given period over the peak filming season.
Aside from the technical skill set that has developed over the last few many spin off industries have benefitted greatly from the film boom that has hit Cape Town, many of these are fairly obvious. The catering industry has developed a separate sector dedicated to the supplying of on-site food services to the mobile film units. Drivers and tour guides have also benefitted with many tour operators giving their time and busses over to chaperone duties during the peak filming season.
Cape Town is set to become a serious player on the world’s sound stage the global economic downturn has forced the major studios to look elsewhere for skill and locations with high production value. Cape Town and the outlying areas offer such a variety of landscapes within a short travelling distance of each other. However it also has many iconic features that are unmistakeably unique to Cape Town, when these feature in a film they place the city as a world class destination and offer a glimpse to the world of just how beautiful the country is.
Helicopter travel and tour companies in Cape Town are one of the many industries that have benefitted from the influx of foreign business bought in by the film industry. It has benefitted Cape Town industries and the city as a whole and the knock effects, if managed properly will be felt for years to come.