‘Loving Ibiza’ is a romantic comedy set in Ibiza that looks at how people deal with getting older. With the theme that nobody wants to be their own age running through it, ‘Loving Ibiza’ places a couple in a struggling marriage – a successful footballer and a popular TV personality, a fifty something woman and an ambitious young man in Ibiza on holiday. They all travel to the island in search of a good holiday and instead, find themselves. Each character struggles with a different dilemma, whether it be an age struggle or a family issue, and Ibiza is where they encounter the perfect circumstances to help them face these problems and find peace within, with numerous laughs and the odd tear along the way.
Ibiza is the perfect location for such a movie, the island welcomes people of all ages and offers several types of holiday, whether you are a hedonist looking for two weeks of solid partying, a foodie that wants to explore the fantastic restaurants or a beach lover with an eye for adventure, exploring the numerous unchartered beaches around the island. People of all ages regularly visit the island and in many cases interact while they are here, the Loving Ibiza storyline couldn’t have been written for any other island! Essentialibiza was invited on set as during filming and grab a chat with director Johan Nijenhuis…
What is it about Ibiza that makes age irrelevant?
In any other town, if you would enter a dancing over the age of 40, you’d be considered an old geezer. In Ibiza smart businessmen discovered something smart: the VIP deck. So if you’re on the VIP deck and over 40, you are no longer a pitiful sucker but a rich man! Somehow, that is attractive for younger women.
The movie has been made specifically for the Dutch market, where romantic comedies are very popular, but are you hopeful that the Ibiza factor will mean it appeals to a broader section of moviegoer?
A movie is not a self-contained universe. It has to reflect on the world, as we know it. The Ibiza factor tells the audience that this is not just a summer romance, but a story with extremes, like the island.
What has been the most challenging aspect of filming in Ibiza?
The absurd amount of money some people think they can ask for a location. A lot of people on the island would be great poker players: you can’t tell if they are bluffing when they ask 100 euros for 5 pieces of sushi. They’re just trying to see if you’re stupid enough to pay it. It’s the emperor’s clothes all the time. But we are Dutch, and therefore like the child in the aforementioned fairy tale. It seems like we are the child that says “the emperor is naked!”
What does Ibiza mean to you personally?
I like the quiet side of the island. I’ve shot in Salou, Mallorca, India, Buenos Aires and South Africa. Off all those places, Ibiza has the best restaurants, although it is a close call with Buenos Aires.