Estonia, a small country in the Baltic states, has a lot to offer – a wide variety of authentic filming locations, highly professional and skilled crew, and great financial possibilities.
The young country is rich with nature, beautiful rural areas, mystical forests – and yet, everything is in close reach. Right next to the majestic nature, are smaller and bigger towns, all with their own historic impact on their design and layout. Take, for example, the capital Tallinn, with its medieval Old Town, a vibrant yet authentic tourist attraction during Estonia’s warm summers, and yet an even more magical ambience during winter-time.
There is a rich contrast of ultra-modern architecture and contemporary Scandinavian vibes on one side, and then on the other side you can find stagnant Soviet block buildings, also known as “commie-blocks”, still in great shape – perfect for a 20th century period piece film. It’s all here, and within easy reach for a zero-hassle shooting opportunity.
To make Estonia more attractive for foreign filmmakers, Estonian Film Institute established a new cash rebate programme, Film Estonia. This functions now, in addition to the regular co-production fund that the Institute has, as an even bigger incentive for filmmakers to come and produce their features on Estonian soil.
Taska Film, established in 2000 by Kristian Taska, is the leading Estonian film production company. The company’s editorial preference has been to period piece movies. The top three of Estonia’s biggest box office hits to date have been produced by Taska Film – Names of the Marble (2002), 1944 (2015), and Class Reunion in 2016. The action war drama 1944 was the Estonian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards in 2015.
A co-production feature with Finland (MRP Matila Röhr Productions), Estonia (Taska Film) and Sweden (Anagram) named The Eternal Road (“Ikitie”), dir. AJ Annila, is the first Estonian cash rebate supported project to be released in 2017.