Location Tips: Video Production in Abu Dhabi

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From the “Fast and Furious” to the “Star Wars” movie franchises, Abu Dhabi is fast becoming the go-to location for film and tv production. Occupying more than 80 percent of the United Arab Emirates’ total land area, Abu Dhabi provides a variety of spectacular geographical locations to fit all types of filming needs. Here are our top five reasons why Abu Dhabi is a hot video production destination for 2016.

Filming Incentives

A very generous filming incentive of 30% cash back on everything production companies spend in the city makes Abu Dhabi an attractive option for filming. Plus, the Abu Dhabi Film Commission also offers free location scouting services, no sales tax, and help with securing permits.

Change of Venue

Looking for the perfect desert? That is what director J.J. Abrams found in Abu Dhabi for his latest feature film “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” Abu Dhabi also has a vast range of unique locations including pristine coastline with year-round sunshine, wild desert, natural oasis, and iconic architecture. All make stunning backdrops for filming, TV commercial spots, and photo shoots.

Enjoy some downtime

Every production needs a chance to relax and unwind and Abu Dhabi has the perfect venues. With six pay-and-play, certified PGA professional golf courses your crew will get the recharge they need to remain focused and productive.

Aerial/Drone Footage

Unlike many countries, the UAE government embraces the use of drone technology, but the Abu Dhabi Film Commission does require a permit for media production drone use in the Emirates. Keep in mind that cultural influences also play a role in what is allowed to be captured and local custom frowns upon capturing images of woman and children without consent, even in public places.


Abu Dhabi has a sub-tropical, arid climate where temperatures range from 10C (50F) in winter to around 48C (118F) in summer. The best time to plan a shoot is a generous 6 month range from November to April.  Temperatures during this period are around 24C (75F) during the day, the ideal temperature to be filming or enjoying the outdoors.

Ready to plan your next production or project in Abu Dhabi?

Let us help! At the Global Media Desk we specialize in bringing your visions to life. We only work with the top regional professionals in such varied fields as video production, photography, and film & video crews. Please contact us with any questions you may have about shooting in Abu Dhabi or any country around the world. You can also request a free online quote to see how we can make your project a complete success.

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Photo Credit:
 Abu Dhabi UAE by Gilles