Due to its stunning scenery, iconic buildings and unique history, the Stirling area has always been popular with film & TV productions, with everything from commercials to period dramas, shorts to feature films and historical documentaries finding their perfect locations within the area.
2017 saw the most successful year yet in Stirling for film production spend, with over £1.08 million in direct spend in the area. Attracting feature films, television, video and commercial productions to shoot on-location in Stirling has benefits for local services. Accommodation providers, transportation companies, restaurants and other local businesses can all benefit. Filmmakers use all these facilities, and their spending power can provide jobs and make the difference between a good and bad year for some of our businesses.
Filming of a large-scale, Netflix production took place in the area for over 10 weeks in the autumn of 2017. Outlaw King, which tells the story of Robert the Bruce and stars Hollywood actor Chris Pine, will debut on Netflix later in 2018. Locations included Mugdock Park. On New Year’s Day 2018, as a key part of BBC One’s festive scheduling, the beautiful village of Killearn was showcased to millions of UK viewers in the family (made for TV) movie Grandpa’s Great Escape. The film was based on the popular book written by David Walliams and featured Walliams and Jennifer Saunders in the cast.
As well as the immediate impact of a film/TV production coming into the area, there is always the ongoing film tourism aspect, which follows an internationally successful film or series. Filming for Series 1 – 4 of the popular Starz series Outlander, has taken place in various locations across Stirlingshire, with one of the primary locations of the show being Doune Castle. Doune Castle is the fictional “Castle Leoch” in the series, which is set during the Jacobite rebellion. The‘Outlander effect’ has seen an over 50% rise in visits to the castle since the debut of the series.
Doune Castle has also been used in a number of other film and television productions, including Monty Python and The Holy Grail (1975) and the pilot film for A Game of Thrones (2011). Stirling University was also used in Outlander for its scenic beauty, with its stunning loch side setting and inspiring views over the Ochil Hills in the background. Airthrey Castle which is situated in the grounds of the University, which at one time was Airthrey estate, was also used during filming.
Other Stirlingshire locations featured on movie and TV screens include Blair Drummond Safari Park , NEDS (2010), The Angels’ Share (2012), What We Did on Our Holiday (2014). The villages of Doune and Drymen also appeared in What We Did on Our Holidays, starring Billy Connelly and David Tennant.
Building on 2017’s success, putting Stirlingshire in the limelight through film, aspirations for the area are equally ambitious for 2018.