Lijepa naša (Our Beautiful) Croatia!

Day 6 - Dubrovnik - Markus Bensch

LMGI Members Harriet Lawrence, Markus Bensch and LMGI President John Rakich were guest speakers at the fourth edition of the Zagreb Film Office’s PROFilm Days Conference held in Zagreb on October 11th.  In cooperation with the Croatian Audiovisual Center, PROFilm’s first “in person” conference in two years brought together a number of foreign and domestic experts to discuss issues relevant to the audiovisual industry.

The three weighed in on a panel moderated by Croatian LMGI member Tomislav Peleski that tackled the hefty issue of “Why Do We Choose Certain Locations and Why Will We Never Return to Some. John Rakich participated on several other equally compelling panels during the conference.

Following the event, the location professionals were treated to a six-day Fam Tour across Croatia to see the country’s many filming opportunities firsthand and meet with local location professionals, local vendors, leaders, and politicians.

The trip started in Zagreb then moved onto the towns of Varaždin with visits to Rijeka and the across Istrian Peninsula then down along the Dalmatian coastline stopping different days to experience the incredible looks of Zadar, Trogir, Spit and ending the tour in Dubrovnik.

“I didn’t know what to expect, for most Europeans Croatia is just another sun/beach/party location but as we found out – it’s so much more. Zagreb which can easily stand in for Paris or Berlin or even Moscow. I found it fascinating how versatile Zagreb was – you have the old Hungaro / Austrian style and on the next corner you have vast estates of Socialist modernism, the next corner a modern yet derelict children’s hospital  and a super modern sports arena.” – Markus Bensch LMGI

“Croatia was a delight from beginning to end and we literally covered the country from one end to the other, North to South. Such variety as we travelled the main sites as well as the less known, more unusual locations of the beaten track – usually the industrial or derelict that really excited us. We covered some ground! Over 1500 km driven, walked more than 110,000 steps, I took 1000’s of photos and met so many wonderful people. We were brilliantly looked after by a wide range of Film Officers, Location Managers, local tour guides and of course our driver who could not have looked after us better.  An eye opening and amazing seven days. I cannot wait to go back, explore the country more, we didn’t have time for the islands (next time!) and hopefully bring a film to this warm, beautiful, and friendly country. It was a joy. Thank you, Croatia. I will be back.” – Harriet Lawrence LMGI

Thank you to the Zagreb Film Office, the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, the Varaždin Film Office, the Zadar Film Commission, the Istria Film Commission, the Kvarner Film Commission the Split-Dalmatia Film Office and the Dubrovnik Tourist Board for your hospitality and generosity