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The other ‘nearshoring’: film and Television production stands out in Mexico | Economy and Organization


Mar 15, 2023

It is not just Tesla. As American providers move their manufacturing operations from China to Mexico, the nation is also experiencing a further form of nearshoring: that of the audiovisual business. Higher inflation in the United States, geographic proximity, and award-winning Mexican talent have aligned in current years to make Mexico an appealing location for film and tv production.

Foreign direct investment flows into the film and video business went from $23 million in 2020 to $five.three billion final year, according to official information. In Mexico City alone, from 2020 to 2021, direct investment – each domestic and foreign – jumped 49%, according to information from the Government Film Commission (CFilma). The total in 2021 was $563 million.

In the final two years, ten commercials made for the most significant day of marketing in the US, the Super Bowl, have been created in Mexico, mentioned Avelino Rodríguez, CEO of the country’s biggest audiovisual production residence, The Lift, and president of the National Chamber of the Cinematographic Business (Canacine). This year alone there had been 5, he added, “and there need to have been six, for the reason that that territory has been conquered.”

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His optimism is contagious. “I am excited for the reason that our generation is functioning really hard for the reason that we have an understanding of that developing the economy is as significant as carrying out culture,” says Rodríguez. A handful of days just before meeting EL PAÍS at his workplace in the San Miguel Chapultepec neighborhood, in Mexico City, Rodríguez met with the Secretary of Labor in an try to draw the consideration of the authorities to what he considers to be a enormous possible for Mexico, if this moment is seized.

It began in 2020, when the US imposed restrictions due to the covid-19 pandemic. By comparison, Mexico was far much more lax and in the capital, for instance, companies virtually did not close. This attracted the US business, which found other competitive benefits. Amongst them is the climate in the center of the nation, which does not alter substantially through the year, producing filming much easier.

Far more causes had been piling up to generate in Mexico. The salary of a technical worker in the US is in between 3 and 4 occasions greater (in the case of post-producers, the distinction is ten to 1), making a pretty substantial financial incentive. In addition, the labor industry in the US continues to tighten. In October 2021, crew workers in Hollywood went on strike, demanding improved wages and positive aspects. Below these circumstances, the geographical proximity and “world-class Mexican talent” make Mexico a pretty appealing location, explains Rodríguez.

That film directors like Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Alfonso Cuarón and Guillermo del Toro have won Oscars generates momentum for the business all through the nation, explains Rodríguez. “For instance, we have leading-level costume designers. A single of the Super Bowl commercials was created by a Mexican costume designer who is competing with the ideal in the planet and with quite a few Oscar winners. We’ve had art directors, Oscar winners, who come up to us and say ‘why is she my assistant? She’s improved than me!’”

Rodaje de un comercial de televisión producido en México para la marca de jabones Irish Springs que salió al aire en el Super Bowl LVI de 2022. Cortesía de The Lift.The Lift

In the most current final choice of the annual award granted by the US Association of Independent Industrial Producers (AICP), 15% of the function was completed in Mexico and 4 commercials won, which grants them a spot in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern day Art in New York (MoMa). In this business, each recognition counts, particularly when competing with nations like Spain, Portugal, Iceland, Canada, Uruguay and Chile, which are also effectively positioned and give incentives.

This business also has an financial spillover impact in the tourism sector. Though the production group is nearby, US providers that commission the projects travel to Mexico to supervise. “We had been the lifeline of premium tourism through the pandemic,” says Rodríguez, about his enterprise, The Lift. “Last year we spent eight,500 nights at the 4 Seasons [hotel]. We had been by far the greatest consumer. Larger than JPMorgan, than Ford, larger than the [Formula 1] Grand Prix in these kinds of hotels, for the reason that each time we generate a project, there is supervision by these who commission us to do the function.”

Subsequent Tuesday, Mexico City mayor Claudia Sheinbaum will meet with executives of the Motion Image Association of America (MPA) and Amazon Prime, the streaming platform, at the presentation of CFilma’s statistical yearbook. “The chance to have pretty strong indicators can give the business a very good platform and take benefit of the circumstance that there is also nearshoring”, assures Rodríguez.

“The possibilities that exist at this moment when the American industry continues to come to be much more pricey and the Mexican industry is gaining so substantially inventive footprint” are huge, Rodríguez says. “I assume it is a moment exactly where there is a generational bonus in the Mexican talent that is positioning itself.”

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