The Hollywood film Hangover 2 has created a new tourism route in Thailand, featuring the movie’s shooting locations and sparking interest among fans. Wansiri Morakul, the director of the Thailand Film Office, a unit of the Department of Tourism (DOT), said Hangover 2 has helped promote Thailand, and its success has increased foreign filmmakers’ confidence in shooting their movies in the country.
In 2010, 578 foreign productions were filmed in Thailand, generating 1.87 billion baht in revenue, compared to 496 films and 900 million baht in 2009. Between January and May 2011, 287 foreign films were shot in Thailand, generating 621.66 million baht in revenue. Popular shooting locations include Phulay Bay Ritz Carlton (Krabi), a speedboat on the Chao Phraya River, Chinatown in Bangkok, Chiang Mai Monastery, and the Sky Bar at Lebua, State Tower. The DOT expects revenue from foreign shoots to reach 2 billion baht this year.
Thailand offers a value-added tax (VAT) refund in cash and is considering 20-25% tax credits for foreign filmmakers doing business in the country. However, Sasisupa Sungvaribud, president of the Foreign Film Production Services Association (FSA), said the government needs to offer more incentives to attract foreign filmmakers, as other countries, like South Korea, provide tax refunds of up to 25% of total expenditures when shooting in their territories.