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 waterfront mansions, palm-lined white sand beaches, turquoise waters and surf breaks.
Agricultural film locations include plantations of cocoa, sugarcane, corn, rice, bananas, oranges, papaya, and a range of other fruits and vegetables.
Belize has hosted productions including McMafia (2018), Monsters (2010), and Temptation Island (2001–2003).
Film locations can be divided by the following districts:
This district is located in the central coastal part of the country.
Belize City is the largest city in the country. It offers old British colonial buildings and dilapidated Caribbean city looks.
Caye Caulker is a small Caribbean island known for its idyllic beaches, mangrove forest, and underwater photography locations.
The country’s largest island, Ambergris Caye is known for its beaches and dive sites.
The Great Blue Hole is a world famous dive site.
Altun Ha is a Mayan ruin location in this district.
Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary is known for lagoons, creeks, log wood swamps, broad leaf forest and pine savanna, and hundreds of species of wildlife.
Cayo is located in the central west of the country.
Mayan ruins of interest include Xunantunich, Caracol, Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave, and Cahal Pech.
Belmopan is the capital of Belize.
Cayo is well known for its wildlife sanctuaries including St. Herman’s Blue Hole National Park, Chiquibul National Park, Five Blues Lake National Park, Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, and Guanacaste National Park.
This northern coastal district is known for the town of Corozal.
Orange Walk is located in the north west of the country.
Lamanai Mayan ruins are located in this district.
Stann Creek is a centrally located coastal district.
The Hummingbird Highway running from Dangriga to Belmopan offers a variety of scenic landscapes.
Nation locations include Cockscomb Basin Forest Reserve and Mayflower Bocawina National Park.
Islands of note include Tobacco Caye, Glovers Reef, and South Water Caye.
Toledo is a southern coastal district.
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
Belize 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 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.
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 is the only English speaking country in Central America.
The country has an ethnic diversity similar to what you might find in Cuba or Brazil. Mestizo and Creole people are the largest ethnic groups. Minority groups include Maya, Garifuna, East Indian, Mennonite, Caucasian, Chinese, and Lebanese people. There is also a minority Caucasian population particularly in the San Ignacio and San Pedro areas. Small Mennonite communities exist in more remote areas such as Spanish Lookout.
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:
Please contact us for corporate rates.
For longer stays we can also organize serviced apartments.
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.