A group of leading film commissions from Asia have agreed to join together in a regional network to be called the Asian Film Commissions Network (AFCNet).
The network intends to make it easier for local and international productions to shoot throughout the region by promoting co-operation among member film commissions, encouraging greater training and professionalism, and undertaking joint marketing efforts.
The first organisational meeting for the launch of AFCNet was hosted by the Busan Film Commission (BFC) in Busan, South Korea from February 16-18. Film commissions and governmental bodies from China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Russia, South Korea, and Vietnam took part in drafting a basic constitution as organising committee members.
A second meeting is scheduled to be held in early June in Matsumoto City, Japan before the network is officially launched in October at the Busan International Film Commission & Industry Showcase (BIFCOM), held during the Pusan film festival. To date, 19 film commissions from the Asian region have expressed an intention to join, with others expected to follow.
Pat Kaufman, President of the Association of Film Commissioners International (AFCI), expressed her organisation's support of the network and said, "We look forward to co-operating closely with AFCNet in the future, and we're thrilled at the initiative shown by these newer film commissions."
Hollywood location manager Bill Bowling, also in attendance as a guest panelist, added, "I think this network could make a tremendous difference, especially if it is coupled with further legal reforms."
"Moving between countries is a particular challenge for international productions shooting in Asia, and if this network helps to solve such problems it could make the Asian region a very attractive place to shoot."