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

Filming in Samoa

For an introduction to shooting in Samoa 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.

Samoa Film Locations

Samoa is a Polynesian island nation located in the Pacific Ocean about half way between Hawaii and New Zealand. Upolu island and Savai’i island are the main islands. Other islands include Manono, Apolima, Nu’ulopa, Nu’utele, Nu’uala, Namu’a, Fanuatapu, Fatuanava, Lepuia’i, and Nu’usafe’e.

Samoa is best known for its paradise island looks including beautiful white sand beaches, turquoise waters, surf reefs, rainforest and waterfalls.

Agricultural film locations include plantations of coconuts, taro, banana, yam, pineapples, mangoes, papayas, and other fruits. Energy locations include hydroelectric power stations, and oil fired power plants.

Samoa has hosted visiting productions including Survivor: One World (2012), Survivor: South Pacific (2011), Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains (2010), Survivor: Samoa (2009), and Return to Paradise (1953).

Film locations can be divided by the following islands:


This includes the districts of Tuamasaga, A’ana, Aiga-i-le-Tai, Atua, and Va’a-o-Fonoti.

Apia is the capital and the largest city.

Palolo Deep National Marine Reserve offers plenty of underwater photography options.

Upolu also has a Giant Clam Sanctuary.

O Le Pupu-Pu’e National Park is home to several volcanic summits including Mt Fito.

Lalomanu Beach, Saleapaga Beach, and Return to Paradise Beach have beautiful white sand and turquoise waters. Aganoa is a black sand beach.

Waterfalls of note include Papapapaitai Falls, Sopo’aga Falls, Togitogiga Falls, Falefa Falls, Fuipisia Falls, and Mu Pagoa Falls.

To-Sua Ocean Trench is a spectacular swimming hole location.

Le Mafa Pass is a road through a scenic jungle mountain landscape.

Lefaga Village is where Return to Paradise (1953) was filmed.

Surf spots in Upolu include Boulders, Coconuts, and Wackas. Savai’i

This includes the districts of Fa’asaleleaga, Gaga’emauga, Gaga’ifomauga, Vaisigano, Satupa’itea, and Palauli.

The dormant volcano Mt Silisili it Samoa’s highest peak.

The Alofaaga Blowholes spray water hundreds of feet up into the air.

Afu Aau a spectacular waterfall that plunges into a deep swimming hole.

Saleaula lava fields is also located on Savai’i.

Surf spots in Savai’i include Aganoa Beach, Pastor Point, and Tiavea.

See here for notes on American Samoa.

Samoa Film Location Permits

Most locations are possible given time, money and the right approach. Please contact us for location specific information.

When To Shoot?

Samoa’s equatorial location offers long shoot days all year round. Samoa has two distinct seasons. The dry season runs from May to October and the wet season runs from November to April. For monthly weather statistics please see here.

Events of interest to filmmakers and photographers include the following:

• The Fautasi Outrigger Canoe competition takes place in June.
• Tafesilafa’i Festival takes place in July / August.
• Teuila Festival takes place in September.

Samoa 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 Samoa.

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. On the whole Samoa is a relatively inexpensive place to shoot although imported goods tend to be expensive. Since no filming infrastructure exists on the islands all crew and equipment must be brought in from abroad. Our Samoan fixer will negotiate local deals and provide the appropriate level of production support to match every budget.

Tax Incentives. There are no tax incentives for feature films or commercials shooting in Samoa.

Film Crew & Talent

Crews. Key crew 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 Samoa.

Talent day rates and buyouts are negotiable. Casting facilities are undeveloped in Samoa so street casting is required.

Samoan and English are the official languages.

Samoans are a Polynesian people. All other talent looks are best cast abroad.

Samoa Film Equipment

Equipment. Camera, grip and lighting gear needs to be brought in to Samoa.

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 are very minimal.

Studios and Backlots don’t exist.

Post Production. None available locally.

Visas and Work Permits

Visas and Work Permits are not required to film in Samoa. All nationals can enter Samoa visa-free for stays of up to 60 or 90 days.

For American Samoa, US citizens can enter visa-free indefinitely and other western passport holders can obtain a 30 day entry permit on arrival. All other nationals need a visa to enter American Samoa.

Transport & Accommodation

Transportation Infrastructure. Roads outside of Apia are in an average condition. Getting around is best done by land and boat. Several international airlines service regular flights to Samoa. Faleolo International Airport is located on Upolu.

Accommodation. Recommended film friendly hotels in Samoa include:

Coconut Beach Resort
Sinalei Reef Resort and Spa

Le Legoto Resort

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. Go for a swim in To-Sua Ocean Trench.

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 Samoa, please see below:

Hire Samoa Production Support & Shooting Crew

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

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