Nestled in the Mediterranean Sea, our captivating island has become a sought-after destination for filmmakers from all corners of the globe. With its breathtaking landscapes, picturesque ports, and rich history, Malta has solidified its position as a premier filming location. Over the years, the island has played host to an array of acclaimed productions, making it a cinematic paradise that continues to attract both local and international filmmakers.
Malta's cinematic journey began in 1925 with the silent film "Sons of the Sea", marking the inception of its long-standing relationship with the silver screen. From swashbuckling adventures such as "Cutthroat Island" and "The Count of Monte Cristo" to epic spectacles like "Gladiator" and "Troy," Malta's stunning locations have graced the screens of countless blockbusters. Even recent titles like "Foundation" and "Jurassic World: Dominion" have found their way to the island, bringing its charm to the forefront once again.
In 2022, Malta experienced a cinematic resurgence, playing host to an impressive 24 projects, including Ridley Scott's historical epic "Napoleon," featuring the talented Joaquin Phoenix. These productions employed over 900 local Maltese workers and a thousand foreigners, injecting a staggering $94 million into the economy. This exceptional performance marked the film community's most prosperous year in a decade, setting the stage for even greater achievements in the future.
With the increasing influx of visiting productions, Malta's film industry has witnessed remarkable growth. The local crew base has expanded significantly, surging from 400 registered production workers in 2018 to over 1,500 today. This growth has not only provided numerous job opportunities for locals but has also enticed individuals from more traditional professions to join the thriving film industry. The low unemployment rate of 2.92% as of December 2022 showcases the success story that Malta's film sector has become.
The Malta Film Commission is committed to nurturing local talent and attracting international attention to the island's film industry. In March, the commission organised workshops that reached an impressive 2,500 participants, providing instruction in various production trades, ranging from carpentry and welding to hair styling and makeup. Moreover, to showcase its prowess on a global scale, Malta will host its inaugural Mediterrane Film Festival in June. This exciting event will feature film screenings from Malta and other Mediterranean nations, alongside conferences, keynotes, workshops, and visits to film sets, providing a platform to celebrate the art of filmmaking.
Beyond its film-friendly reputation, Malta's allure lies in its rich historical tapestry. Throughout the centuries, the 122-square-mile archipelago has been home to a succession of conquerors, leaving behind a treasure trove of awe-inspiring landmarks. Notably, the Knights of St. John, during their reign from 1530 to 1798, constructed magnificent fortifications, Baroque palaces, hospitals, churches, and cathedrals. These architectural wonders have become popular filming sites, often transforming Malta into diverse settings that transport audiences through time and space.
With its breathtaking landscapes, rich history, and notable incentives, Malta has firmly established itself as a cinematic haven for big-budget productions. The island's adaptability and versatility as a filming location have been instrumental in attracting renowned filmmakers from around the world. Supported by the Malta Film Commission's dedication to nurturing local talent and promoting international collaborations, Malta's film industry continues to thrive, offering a multitude of opportunities for both local and international professionals.