Sudhanshu Kumar
Producer and Line Producer at Yash Raj Films

In any film, location is mostly a script-centric decision. If a script demands a location, we definitely go to that location, whether or not we’ll be able to shoot there in terms of logistics and other kinds of support. Then comes the question of the feasibility of conducting shoots at that location. Even if the scripts demand it, we’re not sure if we’re getting the logistical and production support that the film requires, so we look for similar locations elsewhere. Then we’ll match the location with the location of the film, and we’ll cheat.

In the early days, when songs used to be shot, the script was not written on the basis of the location. But it was shot because everyone imagined songs as fantastical moments. One option was, okay, let’s show the audience something they’ve never seen. And we have the cinematic liberty to go beyond a particular location. YRF has shown locations that people had never seen in films. And it helped tourism, too.

Film tourism has now become a mainstream business. Every country has a department that looks at film tourism. So if a film is shot in a particular country or locale, they sell it on the basis of that. If an Indian film is shot in Innsbruck, which was the Tiger Zinda Hai location, the tourism industry has actually benefited and seen a good increase in terms of the number of people visiting the place.

The making of the film talks about the location. And a copy of that is given to the people who are actually associated with it, like the tourism industry, which is supporting the film and the shoot. They need the copy to sell it. It’s the audience that makes film tourism possible. Because audiences in India and abroad are fascinated by the actors—how they live their lives, what they do. If they see something visual in the film, they get fascinated—that’s okay; Salman has gone to that place. Let’s go and see how it looks. Shahrukh Khan has gone to a place so let’s go and see the place. And definitely, these fascinations boost the industry. Because everyone wants to live their life.

If an actor goes and likes the location, they post some pictures about it. We shot in places, like Naxos, a small island where people really never go there. But after it got shot and was promoted by the Greek government, people started visiting the place where Salman had stayed. So those kinds of fascinations become a driving force for tourism.

Auditions for local European dancers are done through videos, photos, and live chats. They (dancers) have reels to show. So they send them. If you look 10 or 12 years back, it was not there. No one used to go and audition people there and take dancers from there. It happened because of technology and social media.

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