Town’s new TV treasure

5 June 2013

casting - CopyAfan Valley firm Creative Casting has secured work for the second TV series of Da Vinci’s Demons. The show is being filmed across Neath Port Talbot over the coming months.

Established in 2007 by entrepreneur Jacqui Morris, Creative Casting has come to an agreement with the Hollywood producers to supply actors and supporting artists.

The first series is being broadcast internationally via BBC Worldwide Productions, Starz Entertainment and Fox International Channels across 200 channels in 120 countries.

The Pontrhydyfen-based company has reported a 25%r on year increase in turnover over the past two years due to the boom of the creative industry in south Wales.

Major 

With more than 1,800 people on its books, 95% of whom are from Wales, Creative Casting has been involved in a number of major productions.

They include Doctor Who, Casualty, Gavin and Stacey, Stella and Wizards v Aliens.

Creative Casting’s Jacqui Morris said: “The recent location of BBC productions to the new film studios in Cardiff Bay, such as Doctor Who, Casualty and Torchwood, and the emergence of the Bay Studios in Neath Port Talbot, where the first series of Da Vinci’s Demons was filmed, have made an enormous contribution to the success of our business.

Facilities 

“However, production companies are not only coming to Wales because of the world-class facilities we have on our doorstep.

“Neath Port Talbot and the surrounding area boasts such varied locations, all of which make for fantastic film and TV production locations.

“It’s also much more economical to film here than in potentially more expensive locations such as London or England’s home counties.

Talent 

“The area is also bursting with talent, which is evident from the likes of Richard Burton, Anthony Hopkins, Michael Sheen and Rob Brydon who have all come from here.”

Councillor Ali Thomas, leader of Neath Port Talbot Council, said: “This is an exciting time for the County Borough.

“With more and more nationally and internationally recognised film and TV programmes such as Da Vinci’s Demons being filmed in the area, they are not only putting south Wales on the map, but also allow local businesses like Creative Casting to really thrive.

Delighted 

“We are delighted that Da Vinci’s Demons is returning for a second series and look forward to welcoming further large scale productions such as these to the area.”

The Da Vinci’s Demons first series created more than 3,000 jobs for the region, including actors, extras, set designers, costume designers, caterers, drivers and film technicians, helping boost the regional economy by an estimated £20m.

The Welsh Government invested in the former Ford factory on Fabian Way to develop the new Bay Studios, as part of its investment in the creative industry in Wales.

Specialist 

Neath Port Talbot Council’s business development team provided specialist support to the production team to help them deliver their investment strategy, buy equipment and apply for relevant funding.

Jacqui Morris said: “This year we received £3,000 of funding to go towards the development of the Creative Castings website from the council’s business development team.

“Without the funding we wouldn’t have been able to update the website as required, and it’s since made an enormous difference to the business.”

Photo Jacqui Morris in Margam Park

 

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