Jump to content


Photo

The Truth on Permits


  • Please log in to reply
3 replies to this topic

#1 Sam Koopman

Sam Koopman

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 8 posts
  • Student
  • Vancouver, BC

Posted 11 April 2011 - 01:39 AM

I've recently started film school and one thing our school is huge on is permits. No way we can shoot(stage) anything on camera out in public with having a filming permit. They say it's basically committing career suicide if we try to film without it. It's something you learn to live with doing and that's fine. However I know of some schools who don't have much of a policy on it all.

What I'm really wondering is to how far of an extent do films shoot without permits? And if no one catches them during the actual filming, do films not get in trouble with the law once the film is done and people notice they filmed illegally? I know plenty of films that made lots of money have filmed in places without a permit for the location. I hear that Lost in Translation was illegally filmed on the Japanese subway.

I'm also confused as to what the rule is on getting public bystanders faces in the way. I thought filming someone who hasn't signed a release form was illegal as well. This obviously happens in movies and documentaries.

Hopefully someone can give me a straightforward answer as I haven't gotten a clear answer everywhere I've looked.

thanks
  • 0

#2 Richard Boddington

Richard Boddington
  • Sustaining Members
  • 5482 posts
  • Director

Posted 11 April 2011 - 10:19 AM

They say it's basically committing career suicide if we try to film without it.


Really? That's a bit of a stretch to say the least. Next they'll tell you film is dead, or that you'll all get jobs in the industry upon graduation. But I digress.

What I'm really wondering is to how far of an extent do films shoot without permits?


Big shows never shoot the entire movie with zero permits. That said, even the big shoots "steal" shots all the time. Most film schools want you to get into the habit of getting permits so that when you move onto bigger projects you are already in the habit of getting permits.

I'm also confused as to what the rule is on getting public bystanders faces in the way. I thought filming someone who hasn't signed a release form was illegal as well. This obviously happens in movies and documentaries.


Crowd shots for example do not require releases when there are hundreds or thousands of people involved. If you where to get a tight shot of one person in that crowd, you would need a signed release from that person. News of course is exempt from all these rules, they can get away with anything they want.

The other question that comes on here a lot is whether or not a property release is required if you shoot a building from public property, i.e. the street and show the view the public would see from that spot. There have been a number of court cases that have gone in favour of the photographer on this issue, namely Charles Gentile V Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame. This does not mean that building owners still won't hire lawyers and come after you, they try to achieve in legal jargon what is known as "chill." (Dallas wants to trademark their entire skyline, yeah right, good luck getting that to hold up in court!!!)

The lawyers for The Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame, did not achieve this in the case of Charles Gentile because he fought back, good for him!!

Private homes are in a different category, and releases for exterior shots of private homes should be obtained. Unless you use a shot of an entire street that does not make one single house the sole focus of the shot.

I get one or two threatening letters a year regarding my stock footage. I have never been sued or landed in court. The other party quickly folds when they realize they are dealing with someone determined to fight back, and fight back hard. If they pursue me in the courts they could spend years and thousands in legal fees to only end up with nothing. Just because someone is suing you in this business does not in any way mean they have a guarantee of winning the case. Regardless of what their ambulance chasing attorneys may claim in their letters.
  • 0

#3 Sam Koopman

Sam Koopman

    New

  • Basic Members
  • Pip
  • 8 posts
  • Student
  • Vancouver, BC

Posted 12 April 2011 - 02:24 PM

Awesome! Thanks for the info, I see what you're saying. Interesting.
  • 0

#4 Rod Otaviano

Rod Otaviano
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 185 posts
  • Other

Posted 12 April 2011 - 03:18 PM

That said, even the big shoots "steal" shots all the time.


Even Hitchcock stole some shots (in "North By Northwest" :-)
  • 0


Ritter Battery

The Slider

CineTape

Opal

Glidecam

Wooden Camera

Abel Cine

Visual Products

Rig Wheels Passport

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Aerial Filmworks

Paralinx LLC

Willys Widgets

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

rebotnix Technologies

Technodolly

CineLab

Tai Audio

FJS International, LLC

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Metropolis Post

Paralinx LLC

CineTape

Broadcast Solutions Inc

rebotnix Technologies

FJS International, LLC

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Metropolis Post

Willys Widgets

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Tai Audio

Technodolly

Glidecam

Opal

Aerial Filmworks

Rig Wheels Passport

Visual Products

Ritter Battery

CineLab

The Slider

Wooden Camera

Abel Cine