Documentary Title: Going South – Cycling Through the Americas (2010) Milan Collin, General Manager, Deepeei Film Productions, Amsterdam, Netherlands PDF Print



There are many awe-inspiring places to film in Panama, but for us there would be none other than: El Mirador del Puente de las Américas (the lookout point of the Bridge of the Americas).


Just before El Mirador del Puente de las Américas, we met up with our two cyclers who had been on the road for the past eight months cycling down from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. They were part of our adventurous, green, cycling documentary, "Going South" and here (at the Puente de las Americas), their epic journey would finally come to an end.

In Amsterdam, our production team had been busy arranging all the necessary filming permits which were ready for us in the Panama Film Commission. Everything was perfectly prepared, but we were running late. In moments like these, as a documentary film crew you really only have one option. We had to forego a stop into town and drive straight to the bridge because there’s only one chance to get the perfect shot. And despite knowing that we’d be running a great risk without a location permit, the risk of losing the ‘moment’ was much greater. We decided that we would pick up the permit afterwards. But when we arrived at our meeting spot just before the bridge, it appeared we hadn’t just run the risk, we ran into a full police squad. Of course, filming without a permit would not be possible. The men were friendly, but our pleading would not budge a single one of them.

At end’s loss, too far away to pick up the papers in time and too close to get our perfect panoramic Panama moment, we phoned our Amsterdam office in a last call for help. Our production team managed to get in touch with the Panama Film Commission. No more than forty minutes later, 10.40AM, and in the nick of time, one of the Panama Film Commissioners came to meet us. We were truly touched and amazed the Commission´s immediate efforts. As the permit documents were presented to the police, our cyclers turned the far corner and we turned on our cameras.

From a green jungle they rode out into view, the bridge glowing in the beautiful morning sun. Everyone got excited. Behind us the police men cleared the roads to give us space and watched with us as our cyclers arrived, caught up in emotion, exhausted by happiness and triumph. There, on El Mirador del Puente de las Américas, one of the most beautiful moments in two people’s lives were made possible by the beauty and generosity of Panama. It’s a moment none of us will forget any time soon.




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