from: Nick Goundry, The Location Guide –
Filmmaker Michael Mann shot his cybercrime movie Blackhat in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia and Los Angeles. Chris Hemsworth stars as a computer expert recruited to hunt an international gang of cyber criminals.
“Michael Mann wanted to have a sense that the computer hack was on an international scale,” explains Janice Polley, the film’s Supervising Location Manager.
“He had visited Indonesia a couple of years earlier and thought it was visually exciting and that it would work perfectly into his story. Michael likes to shoot at real locations and keep for the most part keep them the way they were scouted.”
The production worked with Biscuit Films in Malaysia, October Pictures in Hong Kong, and PT SyZyGy and Infinite Productions for the Jakarta leg of the shoot.
Polley and her team worked with the government in Hong Kong to secure the Tsuen Wan Drainage Tunnel in Ting Kau, which Mann chose for one of the film’s central action set pieces. Another shootout set piece was shot over several nights on the central Connaught Road.
“I was extremely pleased and impressed with the local support for both Jakarta and Malaysia,” Polley adds.
“They were professional, experienced and all of our demanding requests for helicopters at odd hours, traffic police to hold traffic, access to locations that were never granted before, equipment arriving through customs from other countries executed flawless was never a problem and they were happy to help facilitate anything we requested.”
Hollywood is generally increasing its production activity in Hong Kong and on mainland China, partly in a bid to bypass tight government restrictions on international movie releases and access a bigger chunk of the Chinese market.
Malaysia now offers a 30% filming incentive and Pinewood Studios has a facility in the Johor province near Singapore that recently hosted production for the Netflix miniseries Marco Polo.