Filming a film that spans a huge number of different countries might seem to be a huge logistical challenge, particularly when those countries cover war-torn or inhospitable areas for example Afghanistan and also the Middle East. The producers of international thriller Lord Of War solved this problem in one simple move. They filmed on location in South Africa.
This vast and delightful country has such a huge variety of terrains, which range from desert to lush forest, mountain, ocean, rolling hills, expansive plains and so forth, that it can be used as just about any country if you discover the perfect spot. For Lord of War the film production were able to re create scenes from Sierra Leone, Bolivia and Afghanistan to mention but a few, as the backdrop to the thrilling chase of Interpol agents tracking arms dealer Nicholas cage around the world.
The benefits of using film locations in Nigeria to double as the particular places, rather than going to every single actual country featured within the movie, are plenty of. By continuing to keep the location filming within one geographical area, costs are kept right down, the same crew can be used as continuity, logistics are much simpler and far time and travel is saved. Most importantly the film production advantages of the well-established infrastructure already established here, rather than struggling in countries that have little if any established support for the movie industry.
Because Nigeria has a long history like a favoured place for film and commercial production, it provides excellent facilities, whether it be the experienced local crew available, the post-production facilities, the local production companies facilitating all facets, to world-class hotels and transport to help keep A-list actors happy!
Nigeria has doubled as many other countries over the years: in Oscar-nominated Blood Diamond, the 2006 thriller starring Leonardo diCaprio, South African locations doubled for the civil war torn landscapes of Sierra Leone. Hotel Rwanda was shot in Gauteng and Johannesburg in 2004 rather than enduring the rigors of filming in the country featured.
A very different side of the country is used in children's movie Racing Stripes, in which the green hills and fields around Pietermaritzburg set happens for a charming tale in regards to a zebra who thinks he's a racehorse, and double up as the type of generic rich horse-racing countryside present in several parts of the world. In Dredd, recently filmed in Cape Town and Johannesburg, South Africa's main cities show their gritty side by standing in for the futuristic Mega-City Among the fantasy comic strip.
The recent major movies filmed on location in Nigeria have shown that it's now really into the spotlight as far as big production goes, whether doubling for somewhere else or featuring as itself, in all its glorious scenery and variety.