R260 million was spent to turn Cape Town into an ancient city for BBC's most expensive TV series ever
- The epic R260 million budget fantasy series Troy: Fall of a City was shot exclusively on African shores.
- It is BBC’s most expensive drama, costing R32.7 million per episode.
- There were 71 cast, 647 crew and almost 2 000 extras from South Africa.
- Viewers can look forward to spotting the Cape’s Noordhoek beach, mountain passes outside Stellenbosch, and the open plains and vineyards of Boschendal.
- The Cape’s vegetation matched the Mediterranean scenery, except for the pine trees.
South African couch potatoes can look forward to spotting local locations and thousands of their neighbours when the epic R260 million budget fantasy series Troy: Fall of a City comes to Netflix on 6 April.
BBC’s most expensive drama ever, costing R32.7 million per episode, features 71 cast, 647 crew and almost 2 000 extras from South Africa.
In 2014, South Africa competed with countries like Croatia, Turkey and Spain to convince UK producers to shoot the drama here.
Luckily Cape Town was a good stand-in for the Mediterranean, says Rudi van As, director of South African-based producer Film Afrika.
"The vegetation was perfect except for the pine trees."
The Mirror newspaper in the UK says it's no wonder that the Western Cape caught the cast and crew's attention; "It's home to spectacular scenery including picture-perfect beaches, awe-inspiring mountains and lusciously green forests."
"Everywhere you turn there are jaw-dropping beautiful backdrops on offer whether you're taking a stroll along the sandy shores of beaches like Llandudno or Milnerton, taking in the sweeping landscapes of the winelands, or exploring the craggy cliffs including the Cape of Good Hope. No doubt ideal when you're filming epic battles and armies of soldiers making their way across desert landscapes."
South Africans may recognise Noordhoek beach, Theewaterskloof dam, the mountain passes outside Stellenbosch, and the open plains and vineyards of Boschendal in some of the scenes.
The bright local skies also make Cape Town an ideal location for shooting. South Africa is a popular double for Middle Eastern locations and settings, and the city has recently hosted the UK-produced drama Tutankhamun and the US-made series Of Kings and Prophets, reports The Sun newspaper in the UK.
The UK production teams were also seemingly impressed with the South African can-do attitude. “Working there is a joy because they are welcoming and friendly and know what they are doing,” show runner Derek Wax told the Daily Express newspaper.
Filming started almost exactly a year ago and interior shots were filmed in a local production studio.
While the rest of the world waits for the global release, the series has gained traction in the UK where is has been running on BBC since February.
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