Australian pop-rock duo Bianca Oechsle (left) and Max
Donovan (right) celebrate the end of filming for their
first music video with director Benn Jae (centre), of
Queenstown, at Larnach Castle on Friday. Photo by Peter
Dunedin's untapped potential as a filming location is a
dream for artists, producers and the city's residents alike.
Larnach Castle formed the latest set for a filming project,
which brought 22 crew members as well as music artists and a
producer to Dunedin for a few days last week.
Residents were also used as extras in the music video for the
first single by Australian pop-rock duo Max and Bianca.
Artists Max Donovan, of Melbourne, and Bianca Oechsle, of
Sydney, were thrilled by the castle and its surrounds.
''It's pretty amazing, even better than I hoped. We had seen
pictures but being here and seeing the detail in the building
is incredible,'' Mr Donovan said.
The artists were worried about Dunedin's winter weather
before they left Australia for the shoot, but were pleasantly
''We couldn't have asked for a better day,'' Mr Donovan said.
Director Benn Jae moved from Sydney to Queenstown two months
ago and said there was massive untapped potential for filming
locations in Dunedin.
''I have shot in the South Island about five times before and
I heard about Larnach Castle, so came to investigate and it's
just perfect for what we wanted. We are basically using every
corner of the castle, inside and out,'' he said.
Mr Jae said Dunedin could complement the Central Otago
landscapes better known in the film industry.
''Dunedin has amazing architecture, there are so many vastly
different buildings that you can make it look like anything,
really - the sky is the limit.
''Where else in this part of the world can you find a castle
like this?''He was happy to keep the city's attractions a
secret, but those in the Dunedin tourism industry wanted more
producers to know what was on offer.
Larnach Castle marketing and public relations manager Deborah
Price had a cameo in the music video and said it was
fantastic to have such business during the quiet season.
It was the first time the castle had been used for a music
video, although it had featured in various movies and
television commercials, she said.