Bjorn Hanson

Abstract

There has been significant research into the ways that filmmakers employ their locations to communicate meaning, facilitate production and lower expenses. However, there is a surprising lack of analysis on the effects of film production on location. The analysis that does exist relates to particular disciplines and does not account for the interconnected nature of those effects. By first applying stakeholder theory to the production company, I argue that filmmakers have a responsibility to their host communities to consider the wide-ranging implications of their shoots when selecting and managing locations. It is ultimately in the best interest of the filmmaker and the film industry to do so. I support my argument with an interdisciplinary analysis of the diverse ramifications of location shoots. I begin by considering the ways that filmmakers construct space as place through the mise-en-scène of their landscapes and through their production activities. I then consider the tangible economic, touristic, industrial and environmental effects of location filming. I support my analysis with a variety of real-world examples. In some cases, these are intended to demonstrate the potential value of balanced, symbiotic relationships between film and location. In others, I highlight the inherent risks of filming on-location and the complexity of constructing mutually beneficial film-location partnerships. Because of these risks and opportunities and the implications for a sustainable film industry, I argue that location shooting merits continued interdisciplinary analysis and observation.

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