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Belgium

Belgium Film & Photography Production Services & Camera Crews

Are you a media company, brand, ad agency or production company looking for film / photography production support or shooting crew in Belgium? Contact us for trusted fixers, producers, directors, DoPs, videographers, photographers, and full shooting crews tailored for the specific needs of your project.

Filming in Belgium

For an introduction to shooting in Belgium see below notes on film locations, permits, when to shoot, unique local stories, costs, tax incentives, crews, talent, equipment, communications, art department, studios, post facilities, visas and work permits for filming, transport, film-friendly accommodation, and safety advice.

Belgium Film Locations

Belgium is a small Western European country located on the North Sea. It is known for its medieval towns, Art Deco and Art Nouveau buildings, former coal mining infrastructure, an abundance of castles, palaces, cathedrals, abbeys, museums, market squares, canals, rivers, forests, rolling hills, and lakes. Brussels is the headquarters of the European Union and NATO.

Agricultural film locations include fields of barley, corn, wheat, and potatoes. Belgium’s high-tech factories produce metal products, transportation equipment, scientific instruments, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals. Energy locations include nuclear power plants, coal burning power plants, gas power plants, as well as wind and solar plants.

Belgium has hosted many high-end commercial productions and feature films. Visiting productions of note include Sound of Metal (2019), Gemini Man (2019), Kursk (2018), Mandy (2018), The Amazing Race 30 (2018), Sense8 (2015-2018), Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (2016), The Danish Girl (2015), Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), Grace of Monaco (2014), Nymphomaniac (2013), The Amazing Race 19 (2011), and In Bruges (2008).

Belgium has distinctive regions including Dutch-speaking Flanders to the north, French-speaking Wallonia to the south and a German-speaking community to the east.

Belgium film locations can be divided into three regions:

Brussels-Capital Region

Brussels is the capital of Belgium and the European Union. It is also Belgium’s main film production centre. Brussels is known for its gleaming European Union buildings, NATO Headquarters, wealth of museums, and trendy neighbourhoods where cafe culture rules. Film locations of note include the Grand Place (with its beautiful guild houses, Town Hall, and Broodhuis), Royal Palace of Brussels, Royal Greenhouses of Laeken, Cathedral of St Michael and St Gudula, Church of Our Blessed Lady of the Sablon, National Basilica of the Sacred Heart, Church of Our Lady of Laeken, La Cambre Abbey, Law Courts of Brussels, Royal Gallery of Saint Hubert, Halle Gate, Le Botanique, Parc du Cinquantenaire, Brussels Park, Leopold Park, Botanical Garden, King Baudouin Stadium, and the Atomium. Nemo 33 is a 34.5 metres (113 ft) deep diving pool. Art Deco and Art Nouveau buildings of note include Villa Empain, Stoclet Palace, Hôtel Solvay, Hôtel Tassel, Hôtel van Eetvelde, Cauchie House, and Autrique House. Museums of note include Royal Museums of Fine Arts, Royal Museum of the Armed Forces and Military History, Art & History Museum, Autoworld, Train World, Museum of Urban Transport, Wiels Contemporary Art Centre, MIMA, KANAL Centre Pompidou, Design Museum Brussels, Musical Instruments Museum, Museum of Natural Sciences, Museum of Medicine, Magritte Museum, Erasmus House, Museum of Cocoa and Chocolate, Belgian Comic Strip Center, Museums of the Far East, Sewer Museum, and House of European History. Horta Museum features in The Danish Girl (2015). Café La Mort Subite and Le Falstaff feature in The Danish Girl (2015). Palace of Laeken is the official residence of the Belgian royal family. The Palace of Coudenberg is also located on the outskirts of Brussels.

Flemish Region

The Flemish Region is the Dutch speaking region. Located in the north of the country, the region includes the following provinces:

West Flanders. Bruges is famous for its canals, cobbled streets and medieval buildings. Film locations of note include the Plaza Gran Mercado (Provinciaal Hof, Belfry of Bruges, and guild houses), Burg Square, Jan van Eyck Square, Bruges City Hall, Basilica of the Holy Blood, Church of Our Lady, St Salvator’s Cathedral, Groeningemuseum, Hospital of St John, Bonifacius Bridge, The Kruispoort, and Minnewaterpark.

Ypres is best known as the site of the WWI Battle of Ypres. Film locations include the In Flanders Fields Museum, Memorial Museum Passchendaele 1917, Menin Gate, and Cloth Hall.

Castles of note in West Flanders include Loppem Castle, Castle Beauvoorde, and Wijnendale Castle.

Broel Towers are located in Kortrijk.

Ostend is known for Fort Napoleon, and the Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul.

East Flanders. Ghent locations of note include Gravensteen fairytale castle, Ghent City Hall, St Bavo’s Cathedral, Belfry of Ghent, St Nicholas’ Church, St Michael’s Church, St Peter’s Abbey, Korenmarkt, Graslei quay, and Graffiti Street. Museums of note include the Municipal Museum of Contemporary Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Ghent City Museum, Museum Dr. Guislain, Huis van Alijn, Museum of Industry,

Castles in East Flanders province include Ooidonk Castle, Poeke Castle, Wissekerke Castle, and Laarne Castle.

Doel Nuclear Power Station is located near the village of Doel.

Antwerp. Antwerp locations of interest to filmmakers and photographers include Grote Markt, Antwerp City Hall, Cathedral of Our Lady, St Charles Borromeo Church, Het Steen, Museum aan de Stroom, Boerentoren, Rubens House, Plantin-Moretus Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art, Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Middelheim Museum, Fotomuseum Antwerp, Red Star Line Museum, Antwerp Zoo, Provincial Domain Rivierenhof, and the Port Authority building designed by Zaha Hadid. Torenhof Castle in Brasschaat features as Miss Peregrine’s Home in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (2016). Sound of Metal (2019) also filmed in Antwerp.

Mechelen is a picturesque city known for Van Busleyden Palace, St Rumbold’s Cathedral, and Zellaer Castle.

Zimmer Clock Tower and Museum is located in Lier.

Castles of note in Antwerp province include Castle of Westerlo, Castle de Renesse, Bornem Castle, D’Ursel Castle, and Borrekens Castle.

Flemish Brabant. Leuven is known for its City Hall on Grote Markt, Monseigneur Ladeuzeplein, St Peter’s Church, Groot Begijnhof, M Leuven museum, and University of Leuven campus.

Castles of note in Flemish Brabant province include Gaasbeek Castle, Groot-Bijgaarden Castle, Beersel Castle, Arenberg Castle, De Viron Castle, and Coloma castle.

Meise Botanic Garden is located in the grounds of Bouchout Castle in the town of Meise.

Abbeys of note in Flemish Brabant include Averbode Abbey, and Park Abbey.

The Royal Museum for Central Africa is located in Tervuren.

The Hallerbos forest blooms a splendid carpet of bluebells from late April into May.

Limburg. C-Mine, located in Genk, is a former metal warehouse converted into a contemporary art gallery.

Castles of note in Limburg province include Alden Biesen Castle, Château de Duras, and Heers Castle.

Herkenrode Abbey is located in Kuringen.

Tongeren is known for Gallo-Roman Museum, and the Basilica of Our Lady.

Cycling Through The Trees, located in Bosland, is a raised circular forest cycle path. Cycling Through Water, located in Bokrijk, is a cycle path through a pond at eye level. Both locations offer great aerial photography.

Walloon Region

The Walloon Region is the French speaking region. Located in the south of the country, the region includes the following provinces:

Hainaut. Mons is known for its Grand Place, City Hall, Belfry of Mons, and Church of Sainte-Waudru.

Tournai film locations include Tournai Cathedral, Grand Place and belfry of Tournai, and the Museum of Fine Arts.

Castles of note in Hainault province include Antoing Castle, Chateau de Lannoy, Château de Belœil, Ham-sur-Heure Castle, Château d’Enghien, Château de Seneffe, and Château de Chimay.

Strépy-Thieu boat lift lies on Canal du Centre.

Grand Hornu is a former coal mining complex.

International Museum of Carnival and Mask is located in Binche.

Walloon Brabant. The Napoleonic Battle of Waterloo site is located near Waterloo.

Castles in this region include Château d’Hélécine, Château de Bois-Seigneur-Isaac, Château d’Argenteuil, Château de Houtain-le-Val.

Hergé Museum is located in Ottignies-Louvain-la-Neuve.

Collegiate Church of St Gertrude is located in Nivelles.

Walibi Belgium is an amusement park located in Wavre.

Namur. Dinant is a beautiful city located on the banks of the Meuse River, known for the Dinant Citadel, and Notre Dame de Dinant.

Castles of note in Namur province include the Castle of Namur, Castle of Freÿr, Vêves Castle, Walzin Castle, Bioul Castle, Annevoie Castle, Château de Lavaux-Sainte-Anne, Château de Faulx-les-Tombes, and Château de Fontaine.

Les Jardins d’Annevoie are located in Anhée.

The Caves of Han-sur-Lesse are located near Han-sur-Lesse.

Liège. Liège film locations of note include La Boverie museum, Le Grand Curtius Museum, Museum of Walloon Life, Montagne de Bueren staircase, Cité des Miroirs, Palace of the Prince-Bishops, St Paul Cathedral, Church of Saint-Barthélemy, St Jacob’s Church, and Opéra Royal de Wallonie. Liège-Guillemins railway station featured as the Futuristic urban plaza in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014).

Spa is a health resort town known for its mineral-rich thermal waters.

Stavelot is known for the Abbey of Stavelot-Malmedy, and the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps.

Val-Dieu Abbey is located near Aubel.

Blegny-Mine is a former coal mine.

Castles of note in Liège province include Modave Castle, and Reinhardstein Castle.

The Sanatorium du Basil, located in Stoumont, is an abandoned location.

Gare Du Montzen is an abandoned train station.

Tihange Nuclear Power Station is located near the village of Tihange.

Luxembourg. La Roche-en-Ardennes is a pretty town located on the River Ourthe.

Orval Abbey is located in Florenville.

Castles of note in Luxembourg province include Bouillon Castle, Durbuy Castle, and Château de Petite Somme.

WWII Battle of The Bulge sites are located in the Ardennes region. Bastogne War Museum is a WWII museum.

Belgium Film Location Permits

Belgium has a streamlined permitting process. There are no extraordinary restrictions or rules. Please contact us for location specific information.

When To Shoot?

Belgium has a maritime temperate climate with rain occurring regularly across all four seasons. Winter (November to March) is cold and rainy with occasional snowfall. Spring (April to May) is mild with green pastures and flowers in full bloom. Summer (June to September) is warm, with long sunny shoot days. May to September are the best months to film for weather. For monthly weather statistics please see here.

Belgium is known for its colourful and boisterous carnivals held in February and early February / March such as the Carnival of Binche. Every two years in August, an enormous flower carpet is set up in the Grand Place.

Belgium is a predominately Christian country, so those holidays are observed.

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

Unique Local Stories

Brands are looking for local stories that match their brand narrative. Our local teams are a great lead for sourcing those unique stories and characters.

If you are looking for stories for your next shoot, send us your brief and we will pitch you ideas.

If you have a unique story you would like to pitch to a brand anywhere in the world, pitch us your idea. We have well-established processes to ensure that your ideas are properly seen and protected.

Costs & Tax Incentives

Costs. Belgium trades in the Euro. Local costs are similar to what you might expect in other developed Western European countries such as England or Germany. See here for the current VAT rate. Our Belgian fixer / service producer will negotiate local deals and provide the appropriate level of production support to match every budget.

Tax Incentives. The Tax Shelter can provide additional funding up to 25-30% of the total qualifying expenses in the European Economic Area. It allows the finance of up to 40-45% of the Belgian-eligible expenses. In addition, regional funding is also available.

Film Crew & Talent

Crews. Belgium has a good pool of local directors, directors of photography and stills photographers. Belgium has a great depth of experienced, English speaking crews. Crews are non-union. More specialised crew can be easily brought in from major European production centres.

Contact us if you are looking for a Brussels, Antwerp, or Bruges based 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 Belgium.

Talent. Belgium offers a good pool of talent. Buyouts and day rates are negotiable.

Dutch, French, and German are the official languages. Many experienced actors and models also speak English.

Most Belgians are Flemings and Walloons. Ethnic minorities include Italians, Moroccans, Turks and other European and African peoples such as the Congolese. All other talent looks are best cast abroad. Nearby London and Paris offer extensive pools of talent should you need to look further.

Belgium Film Equipment

Equipment. Belgium has a range of standard and specialized camera, lighting and grip equipment available locally. Local companies include Lites, Eye Lite, CQN, and KGS. For productions looking to bring in film equipment Belgium is an ATA carnet country.

Communications. Communication is key. Our agility and global experience allows us to customise the right communications systems for every shoot.

Web posted casting, scouting, and videoconferencing.

For clients that are unable to attend set we offer a virtual video village solution. This dedicated and secure high-resolution video streaming platform allows clients from one or multiple timezones to view setups without compromise and to participate in real-time with the team on set. Separate systems can be set up for the discrete conversations that are required to make a job run right. Working remotely with our local teams reduces your content production costs, turnaround times, carbon footprint, and risks associated with unpredictable global events.

Art Department, Studios, Backlots, & Post Production

Art department and set construction. Art department is very strong. See Caramba Decor/SFX for examples.

Studios. Belgium offers a variety of state-of-the-art studio facilities including sound stages and water tanks. Examples include AED Studios, Lites Film Studios, Eye Lite, and CQN.

Post Production. High standard of post production facilities. Examples include Galaxy Studios, Ace Post Production, DeJonghe Film Postproduction, Dada, Studio L’Equipe, and Dame Blanche.

Visas & Work Permits

Belgium is a member of the Schengen Area. Entry is subject to regulations from country of origin. US film crew can enter visa-free for stays of up to 90 days. Contact your local Belgian embassy or representative for more information.

Transport & Accommodation

Transportation Infrastructure. Roads are up to international standards. Several international and budget airlines service flights to Belgium.

Accommodation. Recommended film friendly hotels in Brussels include:

Sofitel Brussels
The Dominican
Suite Home Stephanie

Please contact us for corporate rates.

For longer stays we can also organize serviced apartments.

Communication. Web posted casting, scouting and videoconferencing.

Final Notes

Safety. Belgium is a very safe place for foreign productions to visit. See here for up to date travel advice.

Down Time. Belgium is famous for its fries, beer, waffles, and chocolate.

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 Belgium, please see below:

Hire Belgium Production Support & Shooting Crew

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

If you are looking for a shooting crew for your shoot in Belgium, 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.