Cayman on film

The Cayman Islands is becoming ever popular as a location to shoot TV shows.

In the next couple of months at least four different crews from around the world will descend on Grand Cayman to film a variety of shows from sports to adventure to quiz programmes.

In fact, the Department of Tourism and producers of one such programme, Awesome Adventures, a US nationally-syndicated TV show, are looking for two Caymanian teenagers to serve as on-air hosts for an upcoming episode. The show will be filming 12 -15 May on Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman.

‘The episode will feature Awesome Adventures host Mystro Clark and two young Caymanians exploring fun and educational activities in the Cayman Islands including, Batabano, Stingray City, the Blue Iguana Conservation Programme, Atlantis Submarines, nature hiking on Cayman Brac and fishing on Little Cayman,’ said a press release from DoT.

It continued, ‘Awesome Adventures producers are looking for Caymanian hosts that are personable, confident and comfortable in front of a camera. The top candidates will be interviewed via phone by the show’s producers. Chosen hosts must be available for all four days of filming and be permitted to stay over in the Sister Islands.’

The producers will also be looking to hire a local film crew.

Awesome Adventures airs on about 125 broadcast stations representing 85 percent of the United States’ television households and 29 of the top 30 media markets. After the show’s initial airing it is often repeated several times over the years which maximizes the exposure. The Cayman Islands episode would air as one of the shows to kick-off the new season, most likely in September.

The show has received a Parent’s Choice award and other honours from the Dove Foundation and the Parent’s Guide to Children’s Media.

Holiday Quiz is a new Irish TV series scheduled for transmission prime time on a Sunday evening as a family show. Later this month three crew, a producer and the presenter will visit to film here.

The sponsoring destination receives almost 30 minutes of destination coverage, which is edited into numerous segments to portray the variety of culture attractions and tours on offer.

The show offers viewers the chance to win a vacation to the featured country by simply texting in the correct answers to some multiple choice questions about the destination.
With the Irish national five-year savings plan maturing around May this year, a huge population will receive considerable financial windfall savings. The resultant 1/2 hour national TV coverage at around the same time of the year positions the Cayman Islands nicely in the minds of those looking to spend that cash on a special holiday.

Top skater Mike Vallely is also to film his TV show – Drive – at Black Pearl Skate and Surf Park in Grand Harbour. The programme is available in 15 million homes in the US on Fuel TV. He visits 18 – 23 April.

Drive goes on the road with the pro-skater as he explores the people, places, and issues defining skateboarding and youth culture today.

The Cayman Islands International fishing tournament will be filmed for terrestrial German channel N24’s Backstage programme.

This will feature reportage on the actual event and back stage coverage.

Last year was a popular year for filming here also, including the Travel Channel’s Weddings Away documentary on Celebrations and Penn and Teller’s underwater magic act.

‘We research every opportunity that comes to us before we invest anything in it,’ said PR Officer with the Department of Tourism, Jo Gammage.

Some travel expenses may be covered by DoT, depending on whether it believes the exposure through the programme is worth this investment.

However, many film crews pay for a lot of their own expenses. For example, Awesome Adventures will hire a local film crew while here.

When asked why there is such demand to film here currently, Ms Gammage noted that a lot of world-wide publicity has been generated from the Ritz-Carlton’s opening and this could be one reason. Also, DoT’s Public Relations agencies work very hard to present opportunities such as these. Missy Farren and Associates in the US, McCluskey International in the UK and the DoT office in Canada all do their part.

‘We get hundreds of requests for things like this and we filter it down based on the exposure we will receive,’ she said.

If you are interested in learning more about the Awesome Adventures show, please contact Jo Gammage at the Department of Tourism at 949-0623 or jgammage@caymanislands.ky.

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