Cinema and Tourism

Cinema and Tourism

Spain Film Commission has been a pioneer in analyzing and demonstrating the relationship between audiovisual industry and tourism. Since its creation, various initiatives have been promoted and have contributed to create a work section with its own entity within the organization.

According to TIC Research, in 2012 there were 40 million international tourists who traveled to visit locations of movies, series or advertisements. Countries such as New Zealand, United Kingdom and France are at the forefront in the development of Film Tourism strategies.

"Film tourism, or tourism induced through film and television, internationally known as Screen Tourism, is a phenomenon that grows throughout the world, and it is an essential element of the promotion of many countries as a corollary of national development of culture and audiovisual strategies.  It is a new typology of tourism that responds to a displacement of the interest of new cultural consumers towards the creative industries, and in particular the audiovisual arts.” Declaration of Valladolid for the development of a Spanish strategy for the promotion of film tourism. 06/09/2016

According to the same statement, this is a basic strategic line for Spain Film Commission and the promotion of the so-called film tourism, which is the link that closes, in the words of Carlos Rosado, President of SFC, the virtuous circle of economy of shootings, which starts at the location and, through the production and commercialization of audiovisual projects, reaches the international diffusion of the locations that become, in turn, the best claim, through tourism, of new productions.

Spanish tourism industry has seen a steady growth in recent decades, which translates into a broad and diverse service infrastructure extended in all autonomous communities. According to the Ministry of Energy, Tourism and Digital Agenda there were 75 million tourists who in 2016 chose Spain as a destination, and this trend is in moderate growth. The current challenge of tourism industry is to develop new tourism products, which differ from the claim of "sun and beach". Cultural tourism in general and film tourism, in particular, constitute a formidable option to diversify tourism and combat seasonality.

Cinematographic tourism impacts in several forms in the economy and in the society where the productions are realized:

- Effects on local economy of film and television series shootings. In recent years, film tourism has grown exponentially, not only because of the increase in film shootings, but especially due to the rise of the global success of series promoted by international channels that have a great audience success. Tourism industry has taken note of this phenomenon and travel packages are already commercialized to know the most famous locations, such as film routes in various territories.

- The impact of filming on the image and reputation of a destination deserves special attention. Shooted images show the singularities of the territory, making them known anywhere in the world. But it is the behavior of viewers that prolongs their experience through social networks: the contents and locations where they have been made are still alive and spoken about in different ways in the digital world. The most significant current case in this regard is Game of Thrones, which has 20 million followers on Facebook, 6 million on Twitter and 3.5 million on Instagram, with a reach to 199 countries. This fact contributes to position destinations, whether traditional or new, in the global tourism offer. It is a powerful tourism promotion tool that territories count on to collaborate in their differentiation and visibility.

Likewise, film festivals have become an engine within the tourist activity of the host city. In the country there are more than 50 periodic initiatives that in addition to promote film and audiovisual arts, has the ability to attract visitors. Festivals such as San Sebastian, Valladolid, Sitges, Seville, Malaga among the most relevant, receive thousands of visitors during its celebration,

Spain Film Commission works on the creation of a national Cluster of Cinema and Tourism with the aim of promoting the cinematographic tourism in its diverse modalities. For this purpose, it is necessary to combine the efforts of audiovisual industry, tourism,  public and private entities, and communities of potential users or visitors. This initiative will concentrate the different individual or isolated efforts related to the subject, such as: the creation of new tourism products, lines of research and the promotion of destinations, among others.