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Belize

Belize 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 Belize? Contact us for trusted fixers, producers, directors, DoPs, videographers, photographers, and full shooting crews tailored for the specific needs of your project.

Filming in Belize

For an introduction to shooting in Belize 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.

Belize Film Locations

Belize is a small country with a great variety of locations in close proximity to each other. Belize is known for having the longest barrier reef in the northern hemisphere, untouched tropical forests and a wealth of Mayan ruins. You can find mountain ranges, dense jungles, limestone underwater caves, rivers, lakes, high waterfalls, and savannas.

Belize is perhaps best known for its tropical island looks including beautiful water front mansions, palm-lined white sand beaches, turquoise waters and surf breaks as found in places like Cayo Espanto, Caye Caulker, Ambergris Caye and Glovers Reef. Belize also has some very good underwater filming locations including the famous Blue Hole dive site.

Heading inland, national parks and nature reserves of note include Blue Hole National Park, Chiquibul National Park, Five Blues Lake National Park, Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve, Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary, and Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary. The Hummingbird Highway running from Dandriga to the capital Belmopan offers a variety of scenic landscapes.

Mayan ruins of interest include Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave, Caracol Ruins, Xunantunich, Altun Ha, and Lamanai.

Belize City is the main entry point by air. It offers old British colonial buildings and dilapidated Caribbean city looks.

Agricultural looks in Belize include banana, sugarcane and cocoa plantations, as well as a variety of tropical and citrus fruits.

Belize Film Location Permits

Belize Film Location Permits are a quick and easy process. Our producer / fixer in Belize will require you to provide a Letter of Intent and a list of crew and equipment you will be bringing in. A film permit costs US$250 and a stills permit costs US$150. Both take about 3 days to permit. These permits allow filming anywhere in the country for up to 30 days and also cover you for clearing gear through customs. The government of Belize is very film friendly and has even been known to offer the support of army and police to assist a shoot. One of Belize’s major draws is the ease of access to filming Mayan ruins, a stark contrast to the very restrictive and overcrowded sites in Mexico. Please contact us for location specific information. 

When To Shoot?

Belize’s climate is sub-tropical, tempered by trade winds. Typically, Belize gets more rain the farther south you go. The dry season, and best time to film for weather, runs from December to May. The wet season runs from June to November. For monthly weather statistics please see here.

Events of interest to filmmakers and photographers include:

• Fiesta de Carnaval in February
• Baron Bliss Day in March.
• Belize Lobster Festivals in June / July
• Benque Viejo Del Carmen Fiesta in July
• San Pedro International Costa Maya Festival in August
• Deer Dance Festival in August
• St. George’s Caye Day in September
• Belize Independence Day in September
• Garifuna Settlement Day in November

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

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. Local costs are very competitive. Our Belizean fixer / producer will negotiate local deals and provide the appropriate level of production support to match every budget. Since little filming infrastructure exists most key crew and equipment need to be brought in from abroad. That said, the industry is evolving very quickly.

Tax Incentives. At present there are no tax incentives for foreign commercials or films shooting in Belize. The government is open to providing incentives on a case by case basis depending on the benefits a production would bring.

Film Crew & Talent

Crews. Belize has a small pool of local directors, directors of photography and stills photographers. Local crews have limited international experience so key crew often needs to be brought in. Supporting crews speak English.

Contact us if you are looking for a 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 for your shoot in Belize.

Talent day rates and buyouts are negotiated on a personal basis. Some casting facilities exist in Belize and street casting may also be required. Belize has an ethnic diversity similar to what you might find in Cuba or Brazil. Mestizo, Kriol and Spanish are the main ethnic looks, but Belize is a melting pot that also includes Lebanese, Chinese, British, Indian, and Mennonite people. There is also a large Caucasian population particularly in the San Ignacio and San Pedro areas. Some small Mennonite communities exist in more remote areas such as Spanish Lookout. Belize is the only English speaking country in Central America.

Belize Film Equipment

Equipment. Some basic equipment exists locally including RED camera, drones, basic lighting and grip. Bringing in your own gear is an easy process. Allow at least two weeks before arrival to ensure duty exemptions. Authorities are film friendly so this can be expedited if necessary.

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. Props and wardrobe are limited to local looks. As an example, you can find a luxury yacht locally but would need to bring in high fashion wardrobe options. Local art department teams are experienced at improvising to achieve impressive results.

Studios and backlots. None exist at present.

Post Production. Belize offers a variety of post facilities.

Visas & Work Permits

Entry to Belize is subject to regulations from country of origin. Crew travelling on Western passports can enter visa-free for stays of up to 30 days. For US crew looking to stay longer, see here for information on obtaining a visa.

Transport & Accommodation

Transportation. Main roads are in a good condition. Rural roads are slower going. Our Belizean producer / fixer organises safe and reliable 4WD transportation if required. Chartered yachts and seaplanes are a good way of getting to and from islands. Several international airlines service flights to Belize. Miami is only a short 2 hour flight away.

Accommodation. Recommended film friendly hotels in Belize include:

Radisson Fort George Hotel
Princess Hotel
Blackbird Caye Resort
Royal Palm Island Resort
Mahogany Bay Resort and Beach Club

Please contact us for corporate rates.

For longer stays we can also organize serviced apartments.

Final Notes

Safety. See here for up to date travel advice.

Down Time. Beach time.

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 Belize, please see below:

Hire Belize Production Support & Shooting Crew

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

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