In Villefranche-de-Rouergue (Aveyron), the filming of the Netflix series All the Light We Cannot See did not go unnoticed. Streets transformed, businesses redecorated… “It was something! », recalls the mayor (various left) Jean-Sébastien Orcibal. He estimates the economic benefits of this month-long filming, which highlighted its medieval streets and squares lined with arcades, to be 2 million euros.
From now on, the town hall would like to take advantage of the success of this series (50 million views) to attract tourists and has even created a specific leaflet. But you still need to know. Because this fiction is not supposed to take place in Villefranche-de-Rouergue. In the series, the city that we see on the screen is presented as… Saint-Malo, in Ille-et-Vilaine.
This is why the mayor is delighted with the tourist guide launched, Thursday, February 1, by Netflix in partnership with Atout France, the state agency dedicated to tourism. The guide promotes the filming locations of films or series produced by the platform. In addition to Villefranche-de-Rouergue, we learn that the Château de Chantilly, in the Oise, served as the setting for The Gray Man , that the Abbey of Chaalis, also in the Oise, hosted Family Business , that the ‘Saint-Julien-le-Pauvre church, in Paris, appears in Berlin … But also that Lupine passed through the Nissim-de-Camondo museum, in Paris, that it was in Bonnieux (Vaucluse) that Emily (from the series Emily in Paris ) realizes her Provençal escapade.
“Very positive contribution”
“We refused to include certain sites exposed to overtourism, such as the cliffs of Etretat seen in Lupine , or the bakery of Emily in Paris, ” says Caroline Leboucher, director of Atout France. In addition to this online guide, there is a Netflix advertising spot to promote tourism in France, supported by the Government Information Service.
For the platform, which finances around twenty French productions per year, seeking support from the State in this communication campaign is a way of asserting its political weight. “Netflix’s contribution to France’s cultural attractiveness is very positive, we wanted to strengthen it,” explains Marie-Laure Daridan, director of public relations at Netflix. The platform financed a survey of 2,250 people in Germany, Japan and the United States, which shows that having already seen French films (or filmed in France) in its catalog has a decisive effect on the desire to know France, to travel there and even to learn the language.
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