Budapest is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe today. It’s no wonder, the capital of Hungary is an exciting city where you can find anything from flamboyant architecture and healing thermal baths to opera houses and sports stadiums. There is also an amazing selection of locations to choose from in the surrounding countryside. So if you are looking for the perfect place to shoot your next movie or TV series – look no further than Budapest!
Exceptional vantage points
The river is not just a backdrop but a key element in a number of compositions, particularly when it’s framed by some of the city’s most iconic monuments. A great vantage point is Gellert Hill, which offers a superb view of the Chain Bridge and Parliament. The Fishermen’s Bastion is another good location, especially at twilight when the colours really come to life.
As well as the city, you have many smaller villages and forests within a short drive of the capital which make for picturesque settings and great for exploring on foot. Combined with the stunning variety of buildings in the city itself, this makes it an extremely versatile destination to shoot.
There has been a post-Covid-19 boom in the industry and there are now plenty of local experts to support international filmmakers. The country’s booming filmmaking tradition of 123 years, unique locations, high-profile studios and 30% tax rebate are all helping to draw in productions from around the world.
A highly competitive labour market, excellent infrastructure and a talented English-speaking crew are all contributing to the growth of the screen industry in Hungary. Production costs are a fraction of those of Western Europe and the US. Working with a local fixer and service producer will help to keep your budget in check.
The city’s many thermal baths are not only an ideal backdrop for some stunning shots but they also provide a unique experience for your actors and extras. For example, the Szechenyi Baths is an amazing baroque palace-style building where 15 of the pools are filled with natural spring water. Adding a little steam to your shots will give them an authentic feel and really bring them to life.
Alternatively, head over to Celeritas Shooting School which boasts the widest choice of guns of any shooting range in the city. Their website shows just under 300 different guns and prices are based on the package you want to book.
Look for reflections
The Danube River is a huge asset to the city and can be used to capture beautiful reflection shots. Alternatively, seek out some of the city’s thermal baths and other public spaces which offer beautiful reflections.
As always, getting the right permits is essential when shooting in Budapest. If you are shooting on private property, it is usually best to contact the actual owner/operators of the space and arrange the permit directly with them. This will speed up the process and avoid any problems on set. If you are shooting on the street or in a public space, you will need to apply for a permit through the city’s film office. shooting Budapest