The Rt Hon Peter Robinson MLA and Martin McGuinness, the First and deputy First Ministers of Northern Ireland, have confirmed that production of Game of Thrones series four will take place here in Belfast.
Best-Selling books turned into film
The ministers confirmed the return of filming for series four following the announcement by Michael Lombardo, president, Home Box Office (HBO) Programming that HBO has renewed Game of Thrones for a fourth season. Game of Thrones is an epic story of treachery and nobility based on the bestselling fantasy book series by George R.R. Martin. Series four will receive funding from NI Screen, supported by Invest NI and part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund.
Last month, Robinson and McGuinness met senior HBO executives at the Season 3 premiere in Los Angeles as part of their trip to the United States around St Patrick’s Day. During the trip they also told of the international events that are coming to Northern Ireland in 2013, G8 Summit, UK City of Culture and the World Police and Fire Games.
First Minister Peter Robinson said:
Securing the filming of series four is proof that Northern Ireland can host large-scale productions with positive spin-off into other sectors such tourism where we can showcase stunning locations such as the Causeway Coast and Glens, Ballintoy, Murlough Bay to name but a few.
The success of Game of Thrones shows our commitment to leave no stone unturned when seeking to secure such international productions. We travelled to Los Angeles to press the case for the Northern Ireland film industry and to encourage HBO to return to film their fourth series.
We have seen the economic impact of an estimated £65million across the three seasons and we want to grow our local film industry to attract more international projects of this scale.”
Martin McGuinness, deputy First Minister, said:
Meeting with HBO senior Executives at the launch of Game of Thrones Series Three in Los Angeles last month shows we are prepared to go the extra mile to secure such an internationally renowned production for our local film industry. The credibility associated with a project of this scale has significant potential for our economy.
A very important part of this large-scale inward investing production is the training and skills development for the local industry.
We are focused on maximising the economic value of series four and build on the employment levels of the previous series where over 800 people were working on the production.
NI Screen is working in partnership with the NI Tourist Board and Titanic Belfast to exploit the success of HBO’s production through the Game of Thrones Exhibition in June.
Buy Game of Thrones Series 1 and 2 now