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Greece

Greece Film & Photography Production Services

Are you a media company, brand, ad agency or production company looking for film / photography production support or shooting crew in Greece? We have fully vetted, locally based fixers, service producers, directors, DP’s, videographers, cameramen, photographers, sound operators, production drivers, and a range of other film crew. Contact us for referrals, questions, cost estimates and references.

Want to know more about shooting in Greece? See below for an introduction to Greece locations, permits, when to shoot, costs, talent, crews, fringes and premiums, equipment, art department, studios, post facilities, visas and work permits, film friendly hotels, transport, communications and safety advice.

Greece Film Locations

Greece is blessed with a long architectural history dating back thousands of years to the Bronze Age, through to Ancient, Medieval, and Modern Greece.

Greece’s natural landscape is just as varied as its architectural heritage with its idyllic beaches, snowy mountain ranges, wine-producing valleys, vast stretches of olive orchards, lush forests, sand dunes, caves, gorges, lakes, rivers, and national parks.

The picturesque whitewashed towns with blue-domed churches, black and white sand beaches and beautiful azure seas make the Greek Islands perhaps Greece’s most sought after film destination.

Locations of interest to filmmakers and photographers can be divided by the following regions:

Greek Islands

Aegean Islands. Santorini is one of the world’s best known islands famous for its stunning sunsets and whitewashed buildings. The island of Rhodes is known for the medieval towns of Rhodes and Lindos. Mykonos is a popular party island. The neighbouring island of Delos has archaeological ruins. Skopelos Island has beaches, lush green forests and picturesque villages such as Skopelos or Glossa. Milos Island has beautiful beaches and picturesque white-washed homes. Other locations of interest include Achilleion palace on Corfu Island, the Monastery of St John the Divine on Patmos Island, the castles and windmills of Leros Island, Neoclassical architecture in the town of Ermoupolis, photogenic Symi Harbour, Lemnos sand dunes, and Tourlitis Lighthouse located off the coast of Andros Island.

Ionian Islands are located on the west coast of Greece. Kefallonia is the largest of the islands. It is known for its quaint mountain villages, Byzantine monasteries and beautiful beaches such as Myrtos Beach. Keffallonia is also home to Drogarati Cave and Melissani Lake. Zakynthos Island’s Navagio Beach (Shipwreck Bay) is a spectacular location popular with photographers.

Crete is Greece’s largest island. Locations of interest to filmmakers and photographers include Elafonisi beach, the windmills of Lasithi Plateau, Samaria Gorge, Dikteon Cave, Gournia archaeological site, the picturesque fishing village of Agia Pelagia, and Gramvousa and Balos Lagoons. The ancient olive tree of Vouves has been bearing fruit for at least 2,000 years. Knossos was one of Europe’s first cities.

Mainland Greece

Central Greece. The ancient city of Athens is Greece’s capital and main film production centre where most crew and equipment are based. The Acropolis (Parthenon, Propylaia, Erechtheion, and the Temple of Athena Nike) is Greece’s most famous film location. Athens also has modern architecture such as Athens 2004 Olympic venues and the New Acropolis Museum. Green locations of interest include the National Garden and Diomidis Botanical Garden.

Within a couple of hours drive from Athens you can reach Cape Sounion’s Temple of Poseidon ruins looking out on to the sea, Mount Parnitha National Park, the mountain town of Arachova, Karpenisi Velouchi Ski Resort, Schinias Beach, Daphni Monastery, and the archaeological ruins of Delphi. Hydra is a beautiful seaside village on the Saronic Islands.

Peloponnese is rich with archaeological history including Olympia, Epidaurus Theatre and Temple of Asklepios, Temple of Apollo Epicurius at Bassae, and the ruins of Mycenae. Mystras is an impressive Medieval town. Nafplio is a picturesque seaport town with Neoclassical architecture. The village of Vathia is known for its abandoned houses, towers and chapels. Karytaina is a beautiful mountain village. Just off the mainland is the hidden town of Monemvasia, located on an island that is connected by a bridge. The Corinth Canal makes for an interesting film location.

Epirus. Northwestern Greece’s locations of interest include Vikos–Aoös National Park, Roman ruins at Nikopolis, and Syrrako mountain village. Zagorohoria is a region in the Pindus mountains home to 46 traditional mountain villages including Mikro Papigo, Monodendri, and Vitsa. The seaside town of Parga is known for its scenic beauty, Venetian castle, and the exquisite beaches of Lichnos and Valtos.

Thessaly. Meteora Monastery is built on rocky pinnacles. Mount Olympus is Greece’s highest peak. The Pelion region has picturesque villages. Ampelakia is a historical town.

Macedonia. Greece’s second largest city, Thessaloniki is known for its Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman heritage. It also has modern architecture such as the Thessaloniki Science Center & Technology Museum. The Macedonia region has Ottoman-influenced buildings in the towns of Grevená and Kozáni. Palaios Panteleimonas is a picturesque mountain village. Kastoria is a beautiful lakefront city with snow-capped mountains. Mount Athos is an autonomous monastic state where only men are allowed.

Thrace. Northeastern Greece is known for its natural beauty as well as its Byzantine, medieval, and Ottoman heritage.

Greece has hosted films such as The Bourne Identity, Before Midnight, Mama Mia, and The Guns of Navarone.

Greece Film Location Permits

Filming archaeological locations requires special permission from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Aerial shots, underwater filming and shoots that require closing public spaces require additional permits. Permission to film the New Acropolis Museum requires a very detailed application and strict criteria to be met. There are no citywide permits for Athens, even for smaller shoots that do not require exclusive use of public space. Each Athens location must be permitted individually. Our Greek fixer / service company can package a rate for permits depending on the specifics of each shoot. Please contact us for more location specific information.

When To Shoot?

Greece has a wide range of microclimates and local variations. Generally speaking Greece has a typical Mediterranean climate with plenty of sunshine, mild temperatures and little rainfall. Winter is from February to March and sees short, heavy showers. The mountains in the north get snowfall and the islands in the south experience a mild winter. April to October are hot with heat waves common in July and August especially in Athens. The height of the summer has 14 hours of daylight. For monthly weather statistics please see here.

Epiphany celebrations take place in Piraeus in January. Carnival festivities take place in Athens in February. Greek Orthodox Easter celebrations (such as the Rocket War of Vrontados) take place in April, as does the Feast of St George. The Aegean Regatta takes place in August in the Dodecanese.

Public holidays may affect timing, availability and costs. See here for public holiday dates in Greece.

Costs & Tax Incentives

Costs. Greece trades in the Euro. Greece is considered to be a relatively expensive place to shoot, however there are ways to film low budget projects, particularly if the projects are small and shoot outside of the centre of Athens. Filming on the islands adds to travel costs as most gear and crew needs to be brought in. That said, our locally based fixers and service producers will negotiate deals and provide the appropriate level of production support to match every budget. See here for the current VAT rate.

Tax Incentives. Conditional funding is available for films shooting in Greece as Greek co-productions. There are no tax incentives for foreign commercials shooting in Greece. Some productions may be eligible for a VAT rebate.

Film Crew & Talent

Crews. Greece has a small but good pool of directors, directors of photography and stills photographers. There is a good depth of English speaking key crew experienced in servicing all types of productions. Greece’s close proximity to other major European production centres allows easy access to those technical and creative crews should you ever need to look further.

Contact us if you are looking for a Athens or Greek Islands based director, DP, photographer, videographer (cameraman / camera operator), camera assistant (focus puller), sound operator, grip, gaffer, stylist, hair and makeup, PA / runner, production driver, or any other film crew in Greece.

Talent. Greece offers mainly Greek looks with some Asian, African, and blonde looks available too. All other talent looks need to be brought in from abroad.

Fringes and Premiums. Taxes / insurance apply but our Greek fixer / service producer packages deals that cover this.

Greece Film Equipment

Greece has a range of standard and specialized camera, grip and lighting equipment available locally. For productions looking to bring in film equipment Greece is an ATA carnet country.

Art Department, Studios, Backlots, & Post Production

Art department and set construction are of a good standard.

Studios and backlots. Greece has several large studios but no backlots at this stage.

Post Production. Greece has all standard facilities.

Visas & Work Permits

Greece is a Schengen Area member state. Entry is subject to regulations from country of origin. Visiting US film crews can enter visa-free for a period of up to 90 days. Our Greek fixer / service company can provide letters of invitation if required. Contact your local Greek embassy or representative for more information.

Transport & Accommodation

Transportation Infrastructure. Roads are up to international standards. Islands are serviced well by ferries and airlines. Several international and regional budget airlines service flights to Greece.

Accommodation. Contact us for film friendly hotels in Athens, Greek Islands or anywhere else in Greece. For longer stays we can also organize serviced apartments. Hotels of note include:

AthensWas

Final Notes

Safety. See here for up to date travel advice.

Projects. For an example of TV commercials, stills campaigns, online content, corporate videos, virtual reality 360 content, feature films, TV series and documentaries shot in Greece, please see below:

Hire Greece Production Support & Shooting Crew

If you are looking for a film or photographic production service company, line producer or fixer for your shoot in Greece, please contact us.

If you are looking for a shooting crew for your shoot in Greece, such as a director, DoP, photographer, videographer (cameraman / camera operator), camera assistant (focus puller), sound operator, grip, gaffer, stylist, hair and makeup, PA / runner, production driver, please contact us.

We are able to provide you with answers, references and bids quickly.