(JNS.org) Writer and director Gideon Raff, the Israeli co-creator of the U.S. spy television series "Homeland," says that the Jewish state should become a major filming location for American shows about the Middle East.
Raff is also leading production of the Fox drama "Tyrant" and the NBCUniversal archeological mystery "The Dig." Both shows are being filmed in Israel simultaneously, which is a first for the country. "Homeland" was based on Raff's Israeli television drama "Hatufim."
"To concoct the Middle East in Los Angeles you have to spend a lot of money. You need to get the cars, the attire and the faces right," Raff told Reuters. "The Middle East is not just a desert, and Americans are increasingly sophisticated and expect a show set outside the United States to have been shot outside of the United States."
"The Dig" centers on an FBI attaché to Israel dealing with a murder mystery. Raff said the show's selection of shooting locations, especially in Jerusalem, was meant to be apolitical.
"We are not doing anything to be provocative," he said, adding, "This is not a show about the [Israeli-Palestinian] conflict."