Most people think of Fiji as one of the world’s most pristine vacation destination – beautiful beaches, dense tropical rain forests and value for money.
These same attributes that throngs of tourists have come to enjoy at locations throughout the republic’s 300 islands are also attracting investors from afar despite massive upheaval the media industry has experienced in recent years. A 2006 military coup – its fourth in 25 years – ushered in a series of tighter controls over traditional print, television, radio and online media. But the country’s film industry has remained unscathed and has seen more and more attention from the largest film producer – Bollywood – because of its cost-effective production facilities, exchange rate, and exotic shooting locations available in the world.
But fascination with Fiji and the Pacific as the exotic ‘Other’ is not a new thing with attention from Australia, Hollywood and Europe stretching back almost a hundred years.
Ian Weber, PhD is Coordinator, Journalism Programme at the University of the South Pacific and QUT alumni (1995, 2000).
Anurag Subrimani is a lecturer in film within Literature at the University of the South Pacific.