Lithuanian location of HBO/Sky series Catherine the Great wins top award

The Pažaislis Church and Monastery Complex beat stiff competition for the EUFCN prize

By Chris Evans 3 Mar 2021

Lithuanian location of HBO/Sky series Catherine the Great wins top award
Catherine the Great filming at the Pažaislis Church and Monastery Complex

The Pažaislis Church and Monastery Complex in Kaunas, Lithuania, is the winner of the fourth edition of the EUFCN Location Award, it was announced at the European Film Market yesterday (2 March).

Situated on the Kaunas Lagoon Peninsula, the monastery helped to recreate the splendid and tumultuous reign of Empress Catherine II of Russia (Helen Mirren) in the HBO and Sky Atlantic miniseries Catherine the Great.

The award was received by Kaunas Film Office representatives Aurelijus Silkinis and Goda Gajauskaite during the European Film Commission Network (EUFCN) location award ceremony.

They said: “We are really glad to receive this award. There is no doubt that the EUFCN Location Award will contribute to revealing the uniqueness of Kaunas region even more and will increase the international visibility not only in the field of film production, but also in film tourism. We would like to thank HBO, SKY Atlantic, director Philip Martin, film producers and the entire crew.”

The five finalist locations selected by a jury of film and TV professionals, including Lori Balton (experienced location scout) and Valerio Caruso, director of Cineuropa, partners of the award, were…

Banská Štiavnica for DraculaSlovak Film Commission (Slovakia)

Lake Resia near Curon for Curon – IDM Film Fund & Commission from South Tyrol (Italy)

Moritzburg Castle for Charlie’s Angels – MDM Film Commission (Germany)

Pažaislis Church and Monastery Complex for Catherine the Great – Kaunas Film Office (Lithuania)

Prilep Area for Vrba (Willow) – North Macedonia Film Agency (North Macedonia)

Lithuania has proved very popular as a filmnig location in the last couple of years. According to the Lithuanian Film Center, producers reaped a record-breaking €11.3m ($13.7m) for production from the local incentive scheme - a 30% tax credit -  in 2020, while local spend from international productions reached nearly €27m ($32.8m), also a record.

Big projects to have shot in the country recently include Netlfix's Stranger Things, UK-Swedish drama With One Eye Open, and another Netflix series Clark.

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