Vagabond Production Services further expands their global reach with the launch of its Portugal office. The branch will be headed up by Sonia De Jesus Costa, a Portuguese-born commercial and features producer who has worked in Lisbon and Barcelona over the last 20 years. Combining her decades of experience with the knowledge of her native country, Sonia will take full advantage of what she calls, “the new hotspot for production services.”
Sonia was the driver for the Portugal venture, and will work closely between the new location and the Spain office, where the Vagabond team is currently in production for Toyota. Also in Spain, Vagabond recently completed work on an international Jeep campaign directed by Juergen Bollmeyer out of Mod/Op Films. The ads, which absolutely soar with the beauty of Barcelona and Madrid, are just a hint of what’s to come with the company’s expansion into the gorgeous country of Portugal.
The unique scenery isn’t the only reason Portugal is an unmissable destination for film shoots, says Sonia. “Portugal is economical, making it a very competitive production option. It is undoubtedly one of the best countries to get the most value for your money in all of Europe.”
According to Sonia, the push to work in Portugal is due to the combination of production facilities, government support, and the extended network of specialized technicians and vendors. Additionally, Portugal’s streamlined permitting process is artistically inviting and favors quick turnaround times. Only in Lisbon can filming permits be obtained within three working days, and a permit from the parents is the only requirement to shoot with children, without having to wait weeks dealing with administrations.
As the lead line producer for any project to come through the Portugal office, Sonia attests that, “Nothing is impossible in this beautiful country,” and her years of working across the production landscape certainly grant her the expertise to make such a claim. Sonia began her career as a photo assistant, then moved towards live-action production, where she spent time in nearly every position in the department, working as a PA, location manager, 2nd AD, production coordinator, production manager and producer. Apart from Portugal and Spain, Sonia has worked in Italy, France, Germany, the UK, Morocco and New York. That she also speaks five languages only elevates Vagabond’s already significant international cache.
Formed in 2002 by Lorenzo Benedick and Gabriel Carratu, Vagabond has established itself as a go-to creative partner of producers, directors, agencies and global brands. The Portugal office further broadens the Vagabond network, with already established branches in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, the Dominican Republic Mexico, Peru, Spain, Switzerland, Uruguay, and the United States.