Tuesday, May 23, 2023
NOVEMBER 12, 2019
Viorel Sergovici at outdoor film set discusses Romanian incentives
Romania leaves the shadows of communism for the lights of global film production
By Grayson West for The National Business Post
Prior to his passing, Viorel Sergovici Sr. was the most awarded Director of film and television in Romania. Having received numerous Golden Prague awards, Sergovici had a very successful career during the communist era making television and film for the Romanian audience.
Today, his son, Viorel Sergovici has taken the torch and lit up cinema for not only Romanian audiences but for audiences across Europe and the United States.
“I like working with both American and European directors. Now having completed more than 80 films with more than 40 different directors, and more than 600 commercials, I am very adaptable to the differences in shooting.”
Viorel attended Film Academie in Bucharest in 1989 and in 1991, and under the guidance of his father, completed his first feature film. Learning on real film stock, today Film Academie is recognized as one of the best schools in Europe for those wanting to learn film directing and camera work.
“We have to shoot both commercial and film in Romania, because we are smaller country, so you learn early on how to work in both and hence you gain a lot of experience and don’t necessarily specialize, which in the long run, is good for any DOP.”
Since the fall of the country’s communist political leadership in 1989, Romania has continued to garner interest globally, as producers constantly balance budget and adaptability of location.
“Today, Romania is considered one of the top 5 Eastern European countries for productions because we have really well trained crews, along with economic incentives that make it financially beneficial for producers.”
Romania’s scheme, launched in October, offers a 35 percent cash rebate on qualified expenditures for international productions shooting in Romania and also for domestic productions. The new incentives are backed by an annual $57 million budget, available to spend on a first-come, first-served basis until 2020.
Romania’s varied and accessible locations — mountains and seaside, urban and rural settings, ancient and modern locales – have made it a magnet for international productions in recent years, including The Nun, the 2018 horror blockbuster from New Line that has now grossed more than $360 million globally.
For Viorel, Romania has become a back drop for many of his projects as he now manages BUFTEA – state of the art production facilities in Bucharest.
“For me, it is all about the process. Getting on set. Working with the director. Scouting locations. And being able to shoot worldwide. I look at every film as new. There is not just one template. Every movie for me it’s new… the actors are new, lines are new, situations are new, locations are new…”
Today, Viorel lives with his wife and kids outside of Bucharest, but spends a lot of time traveling back and forth between Eastern Europe and Los Angeles, where he has garnered a following, working with the group of directors and producers he first met, during his first visit to the States in 1994.
“I have been working with the same group I first met when I came to Hollywood. They have become family. Jeff Burr, Billy Butler, Dave Parker, Tony Hickox. I shot a lot of horror movies. I still shoot with these guys.”
Viorel is currently working on two projects back in Romania, SINS with director Tony Hickox, and CAGE FIGHTER, which is presently in production.
Copyright © 2019. The National Business Post. All rights reserved.
Grayson West is a freelance journalist contributing to most things outdoor. Grayson enjoys writing about the more creative things in life, focuses on outdoor adventure and tries to balance his busy city life with moments at the beach. Grayson lives in LA with his wife and twin boys, and their beautiful golden, Nelson.