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Greenland Filming Support

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Summary

Based in East Greenland, we provide all aspects of support for Greenland filming and photography projects.

Our expertise lies within our close-knit team of local experts.  We combine a deep knowledge of this astoundingly wild country with many years of experience in planning and undertaking Greenland fixing, from complex logistics and safety work.

For more info on the possibilities, please read on.

Greenland Location Scouting and Consulting

From our base in East Greenland, we can undertake location scouting for specific projects.  This can be undertaken by boat, helicopter, or even on ski/dogsled.  More information on generic locations can be found below.

We’d strongly recommend contacting us early on in the planning phase to discuss possibilities as well as limitations.  Greenland offers incredible locations, some of which are surprisingly simple to access; at the other end of the scale, it’s easy to turn what could be a relatively simple shoot into a intense expedition-type project.  Our intention in the early planning stages is to advise on practicability of location choice/shoot, optimum season and a rough scale of costing.

Greenland Film Locations

Greenland, occupying a landmass similar to that of Western Europe, offers a multitude of wild land, water and ice-scapes and is one of the last places on earth where the Inuit still hunt by dog sled from tiny isolated communities.  Seasonal variation plays a massive part, from the deep cold and dark snow storms of winter to month-long high pressure systems, 24-light and surprisingly verdant summers.
Whilst we have worked all over Greenland, our base in East Greenland lies in the centre of some of the most varied, majestic and wild land possible.  With a short schedule flight and varying logistics open to us in-country, it often proves to be a powerful region for film projects.

The Icecap

Greenland’s icecap is the second largest mass of ice on earth (next to Antarctica).  The icecap itself offers many thousands of square kilometres of relatively level snowfields and can be accessed by boat or helicopter (dependent on location and season).  Our guides have spent a lot of time on the Inland Ice, both on crossings and film projects.

Greenland’s Glaciers

Greenland’s glaciers extend from the icecap, flowing many tens of kilometres through the coastal mountains to reach the ocean.  These are ice floes on a vast scale – glaciation here is far more advanced than areas like the European Alps.  There are many massive glacier faces that calve into the water.  We have set up a number of camps to capture large calving events.  Our team of internationally certified IFMGA mountain guides can provide safety and rigging to facilitate filming.

Aurora Borealis/Northern Lights

With long periods of high pressure and a location near the arctic circle, our base in Kulusuk, East Greenland, often experiences wild displays of the Aurora Borealis.  Displays start to appear around the the re-appearance of dark nights around late August/early September and continue through to mid April (when the nights are no longer properly dark).

Icebergs

With some of the most active glaciers in the northern hemisphere, the waters of Greenland carry huge numbers of icebergs.  These vary in size from broken ice blanketing fjords to massive icebergs.  Our base in Kulusuk, East Greenland, is surrounded by great locations for iceberg filming.  Inherently unstable, icebergs must be approached cautiously.

Sea Ice

The fjords of East Greenland freeze every winter.  It’s here that the Inuit drive dog sleds to visit isolated settlements, hunt and fish.  This is polar bear habitat.  Travelling and filming on sea ice requires a carefully developed safety plan and the right team.

Fjords and Mountains

East Greenland’s coastline is one of the wildest, least populated pristine wildernesses on earth.  The mountains are alpine in scale and extend thousands of kilometres up the coast.  Much of the coast is riven by deep fjords and glaciers.  In certain areas, complex valley systems of braided streams and small lakes experience a brief but intense summer which can be surprisingly verdant.

Wildlife

East Greenland’s waters and land are populated by a wide array of arctic fauna and flora.  We see many cetaceans in the fjords during the summer months.  Arctic foxes can regularly be seen whilst our most famous mammal, the polar bear, hunts in coastal pack ice.  Bear sightings are extremely rare as they will generally avoid any human contact.

Inuit Community

East Greenland is populated by the Tunumiit, an isolated Inuit community, many of whom still subsistence hunt by boat in summer and by dog sled in the cold months.  In our area, there are 5 tiny settlements of colourful wooden cabins located around the fjordlands.  It’s possible to film some of the most respected hunters of the region at home and whilst out in the fjords.

Greenland Fixing & Safety Work

We provide all aspects of filming support from the earliest stages of planning to filming.  We can assist in organising flights and accommodation, to in-country logistics and safety.

Remote Filming & Safety

There are only a few isolated settlements in East Greenland so by nature, most filming work here is undertaken in serious wilderness conditions.  Our guides hold the highest levels of international certification and are experienced in managing the diverse and unique risks that this region presents, from polar bears to sea ice, glaciers and the severe weather that can be experienced here.

Whilst some projects can base out of our lodge or one of the two hotels in the region, it may be necessary to establish a wilderness camp, particularly when capturing footage of the glacier calving faces.  We can provide a full set-up, from survival equipment to basecamp tents, power sources and communications.

As IFMGA alpine guides, we specialise in safety rigging and consult on and manage filming in high angle terrain and around glaciers.

Greenland Logistics

Getting to Greenland

East Greenland can be reached by schedule plane in around one and a half hours from Reykjavik, Iceland.  Our base in the small Inuit village of Kulusuk is within walking distance of the airstrip.

West Greenland can be accessed by direct flight from Kulusuk or by international flight from Copenhagen, Denmark.

 

In-Country Logistics

Kulusuk has direct access to the fjords where boats are widely used to access the whole region.  In winter, when the sea freezes, we use snowmobiles and dog sleds to travel.  Increasing use of drones in the last years has lessened recent use of helicopters but there are 2 in the area available for charter, both for filming and movement of crew.

Greenland Filming Season & Daylight Times

November – February: the months of winter are particularly challenging with low daylight hours, regular extreme weather and disrupted travel.  We would only recommend filming during this period for very specific projects.

Daylight hours: 6 hours in mid November; 7 hours 20 mins in mid February

March – May: March tends to experience less settled weather and can make for some very dramatic footage.  Stable high pressure often moves in around early April.  Classic dog sledding season, the sea ice is usually at its strongest and at its greatest extend during this period.  The Aurora Borealis is often seen until around mid April.

Daylight hours: 10 hours in early March; 19 hours in mid May

June – August: Long hours of light, generally stable weather and increasingly easy travel makes this season a good time to film.  Sea pack ice lessens throughout the period, generally making boat travel simplest through August.  The snow-line quickly retreats higher up the mountains, allowing lower lying ground to enter a short but intense growing period.

Daylight hours: 21 hours 15 mins in early June; 15 hours in late August

September – October: lengthening nights and the onset of autumnal storms.  The first thin film of ice starts to form in the inner fjords and rain falls as snow on the higher mountains.

Daylight hours: 14 hours 40 mins in early September; 7 hours 45 mins in late October

Past Projects

We have had the privilege of working on some great projects for organisations like NHK and the BBC as well as multiple independents and some great photographers.

Here’s a selection of some previous projects:

 

 

 

 

Murray Fredericks’ work can be seen here.

 

Some early footage captured for the Little Baroque Company’s silent film ‘The Fjord’

Interested in booking?

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