By Samantha Ofole-Prince
For the filmmakers of “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” pulling off the several big action sequences required an intense coordination between the local South African government and citizens of Johannesburg.
“When you’re bringing a movie of this size, you need a government that’s going to be welcoming, cooperative and give you the access to the city that you need,” says executive producer Jeremy Latcham. “Johannesburg had the look and access to the streets we needed.”
A couple of year ago, several South African film delegates from KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission and the National Film and Video Foundation came to Hollywood to meet with studio and movie executives with hopes of attracting foreign productions to film in the country. During their visit, the team spoke exclusively with Gbam TV’s Samantha Ofole-Prince about the benefits of filming in South Africa, benefits which include tax credits and incentives for filming, post-production, co-productions, editing and other services. It’s a visit that has paid off as several more movies are now being filmed in S.A.
“The country was really film friendly and it’s really nice to find governments that want filmmakers to come and show off their city and that’s what we have done,” adds Latcham, who also served as an executive producer on the 2012 blockbuster hit Marvel’s “The Avengers.”
In “Avengers: Age of Ultron” earth's mightiest heroes; Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, aka ‘the Super Hero dream team’ unite to protect the world from the greatest threat mankind has ever seen. Robert Downey Jr. plays Tony Stark/Iron Man, Chris Hemsworth is Thor, Mark Ruffalo plays the Hulk, Chris Evans returns as Captain America and Scarlett Johansson is Natasha/Black Widow.
With a massive amount of visual effects, mass destruction and mayhem, director Joss Whedon manages to put together a sequel that is fast, funny. There is great camaraderie as the world’s favorite super heroes joke around with one another in the summer blockbuster, which is based on the popular Marvel comic book series, first published in 1963.
“In the downtown streets, we flew helicopters, crashed cars and exploded massive pyrotechnics,” Latcham continues, “I think the people of Johannesburg are going to be thrilled to see their city well represented up on the big screen.”
“Avengers: Age of Ultron” is rated PG-13 (for intense sequences of sci-fi action, violence and destruction, and for some suggestive comments)
“We Looked All Over Africa And Johannesburg Was Clearly The Place To Be,”' Says ‘Avengers’ Producer Jeremy Latcham
By Samantha Ofole-Prince