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FAQ


I. GENERAL INFORMATION

1. When and where can I meet the Film France team?
2. What services do the film commissions provide?
3. What territory does a film commission cover?
4. Are there film commissions all over France?
5. How is a film commission created?
6. Do film commissions exist in other countries?
7. Why do Film France and the various film commissions choose not to divulge certain information about film shoots?
8. I ordered a guide book – when will I receive it?

II. FILMING IN FRANCE

1. I have a project. When should I contact Film France or a film commission?
2. I'm looking for a location. How can Film France and the film commissions help me?
3. I've experienced some technical difficulties with my set – what should I do?
4. What is the difference between pre-location scouting and location scouting?
5. What is the procedure to follow to obtain authorization to shoot?
6. Do I have to pay for the rights to shoot at a location?
7. Why do I have to pay an architectural copyright fee to shoot in a building?
8. I'm the owner of a site and I want to host a film shoot – how can Film France help me?
9. I'm an executive producer – how can I make myself known?
10. What are the regulations applicable to shooting in France?
11. I want to film in Paris – how can I do it?

III. LOOKING FOR FUNDING

1. Do Film France and the film commissions financially support film shoots?
2. Does Film France know about the different ways of funding a project?
3. What is the TRIP?

 
  I – GENERAL INFORMATION
 
  1. When and where can I meet the Film France team?
The Film France office is based in Paris, but the team moves around a great deal for industry events throughout the year including: The Clermont-Ferrand short film festival, the Berlin Film Festival, the Locations Trade Show in Los Angeles, the Cannes Film Festival, the la Rochelle TV Fiction Festival, etc. Film France also organizes or participates in several professional conferences.
 

  2. What services do the film commissions provide?

The film commissions offer information services and assistance for film and audiovisual industry professionals at no charge, for example:

• search for set locations
• liaison with local authorities and facilitating shooting authorizations
• logistical help (production offices)
• list of actors and crew members (outside of the Ile de France region)
• list of renters and service providers
 


  3. What territory does a film commission cover?

There are film commissions at different territorial levels. A regional film commission covers a specific region, a departmental film commission covers a department and a municipal commission, a city. Film France's network exists so that all of these different film commissions can work together to benefit both professionals and the territories concerned.
 


  4. Are there film commissions all over France?
YES… almost. The entire metropolitan territory is covered. There are also off-shore film commissions such as Corsica, Reunion Island, New Caledonia, Guadeloupe and French Polynesia (Tahiti).
 

  5. How is a film commission created?

Different parameters need to be taken into consideration to create a film commission. The welcoming services for film shoots are for the benefit of professionals and the different territories.

T here needs to be an active approach on behalf of the local authorities of all of the territories to provide their territories with attractiveness and general interest. Local authorities have several options: create a service dedicated to welcoming film shoots or giving missions to a structure (an association, establishment, audience, etc.)

To create a departmental or municipal film commission, the project must preferably be channeled through the regional film commission. If you want more information about the creation of a film commission and membership in Film France's network, you can contact Caroline Julliard-Mourgues : film@filmfrance.net +33 (0)1 53 83 98 98.
 


  6. Do film commissions exist in other countries?

YES. The first film commissions were created in the United States in the 50s. Since then, they exist in several countries. Film France is a member of two international associations that regroup film commissions:

  • EuFCN (European Film Commissions Network), http://www.eufcn.net of which Patrick Lamassoure is the General Secretary;
  • AFCI (Association of Film Commissioners International) http://www.afci.org
    If you're looking for the contact for foreign film commissions, check out the l'EuFCN and/or l'AFCI websites.
     

  7. Why do Film France and the various film commissions choose not to divulge certain information about film shoots?
Film France and the film commissions pride themselves on building relationships based on trust with all of their interlocutors. In order to best help film crews, a film commission needs a great deal of privileged information. If the commission communicates this information to others (local professionals, the public, press), it breaks the confidentiality agreement it has with the film's production team. For this reason, the film commissions do their best to respect the confidentiality of the information transmitted to them. It's a question of ethics.
 

  8. I ordered a guide book – when will I receive it?
We have received your order if you've received a confirmation email. You will receive the guide depending on the normal delivery times of your postal service. It's possible that during vacation months, this will take more time. If you live abroad or overseas, the delivery time will evidently be longer. While you're waiting, you can download a pdf version of the guide on our website.
 

  II. FILMING IN FRANCE
 
  1. I have a project. When should I contact Film France or a film commission?
The more Film France and the local film commissions are solicited for help with the project with precise information (production company, funding in the works, constitution of the film crew, screenplay, etc.) the more effective they can be to facilitate the crew's work.

According to the film shoot welcoming guidelines, Film France and the film commissions vow to respect the confidentiality of information shared with them.
 

  2. I'm looking for a location. How can Film France and the film commissions help me?

Helping to look for film locations is one of the main missions of the film commissions. This aid cannot replace the professional work of a locations scout, however. It concerns essentially "pre-locations scouting." We recommend that you first consult our locations database. It's a database of pre-locations scouting, developed by Film France, and used by the French metropolitan and overseas film commissions. It's available for free consultation. There are several steps involved in looking for locations:

  • Geographic zone
  • Type of scenery
  • Only the scenery of the zone chosen will appear

You can refine your search by using other criteria: localization, period of construction, architectural style. For each file, you can access a summary of information and photos. For more precise information about each location, you can sign up for free and create your own locations scouting file

The appropriate film commissions based on your research will provide you with complementary information about the availability and access to the location plus any supplementary photos via a .pdf file that you can download from your locations scouting file the next time you log into your computer. For particularly specific searches, don't hesitate to contact the film commissions by email or by phone.

If your research involves several territories, you can ask Film France to coordinate the research and the responses from the film commissions. We have an internal research and networking tool (the forum) that allows us to communicate with the entire network of 41 film commissions regarding a type of location difficult to find.
 


  3. I've experienced some technical difficulties with my set – what should I do?

Please copy the error message that appears on your screen and send a message regarding the problem to Calvin Walker, webmaster at film@filmfrance.net

Technical problems cannot be resolved by phone.
 


  4. What is the difference between pre-location scouting and location scouting?

The www.filmfrance.net database is a pre-location scouting database. It doesn't replace the work of a professional scout for a specific project.
 


  5. What is the procedure to obtain authorization to shoot?

There are as many procedures as there are locations. Information is available in Chapter 2 of the Practical guide for film shoots. One of the roles of the film commission is to give you information about the steps to take in order to obtain the authorization to film.

Whatever the procedure, you always need to present a synopsis of the scenes being filmed at the location, insurance, a list of the technical crew, the project's budget, the number of days shooting and prep at the location. The availability of the set will be based on an agreement, whether paid or free of charge.

Please note that the permits to film in public spaces are often given by local municipal authorities.
 


  6. Do I have to pay for the rights to shoot at a location?

Filming at a location may involve two kinds of costs:

  • the cost of the availability of the location (that can take different forms: rent, availability fee, fee for services rendered…)
  • the architectural copyright:
    see the next question
     

  7. Why do I have to pay an architectural copyright fee to shoot in a building?

In addition to the authorization to shoot, for certain locations, the authorization of the architect of the building may be necessary. This can be in the form of a copyright payment ("image rights"). If the shots are meant to show a building with a particularly original character and if the architect is still living or has been dead for less than 70 years, the authorization of the architect or of his representative is necessary in order for the shots to be used.

In accordance with intellectual property rights and as an artist, the architect has the rights to exploit his work for his entire life and transmit these rights to his estate for the year of his death and the 70 years following his death. After that, the building falls into the public domain.

French "author rights" laws consist of: a moral right (the right to divulge the work, the right to set the conditions of its representation and of its reproduction); pecuniary rights (the right to gain profit from a work.)

So, if a building is still protected by its architect's copyright: to obtain the authorization to use the building's image, you'll need to contact the architect himself or the owner of the estate (which can be mandated by the architect for the management of these rights) or an administration handling copyright laws such as the ADAGP (wwww.adagp.fr) for example (this organization operates and administers copyrights by the Code of Intellectual Property of its associated members).

The fee payable for such rights is fixed for buildings protected under copyright law. Factors considered to determine the price for such rights include: the duration of the operation of the image of the building, the type of film, the use of the building's image in the film.

Please note that these "author's rights" aren't necessary if the building isn't the principal object of a shot. This is assessed on a case by case basis (is the building part of a fixed shot? Is it included in a traveling shot? How long does it appear on screen? Is it in focus?)

If you have any questions and you want more information on the cost of rights to film, you can contact Caroline Julliard-Mourgues, head of legal affairs film@filmfrance.net +33 (0)1 53 83 98 98 or the film commission in the territory where the building is located.
 


  8. I'm the owner of a location and I want to host a film shoot – how can Film France help me?

Film France has developed tools to help the decision process and is at your disposal to help you define your policy for welcoming film productions (implementation of the offer, contract, prices).

Film France will work on it in close collaboration with local film commission and the APIE (Agency for Public Intangibles of France). To announce the availability of your site for a film shoot, one of the first things to do is to add your location free of charge to the Film France database at www.filmfrance.net

To that extent, you can contact the local film commission in your region.
 


  9. I'm an executive producer – how can I make myself known?

To get acquainted with Film France, its missions and its services, you can schedule a meeting with Franck Priot, Deputy Director of Film France or Mélanie Chebance who handles foreign productions: film@filmfrance.net ou +33 (0)1 53 83 98 98.
 


  10. What are the regulations applicable to shooting in France?

We recommend that you consult chapter three of our France Production Guide. For more information not in the guide book, or for more precise questions, you can contact Film France's legal department, Caroline Julliard-Mourgues: film@filmfrance.net ou +33 (0)1 53 83 98 98.
 


  11. I want to film in Paris – how can I do it?

You can consult Paris Film, Cinema Mission of the City of Paris' website:
www.parisfilm.fr. There, you'll not only find information about Parisian locations, but also practical information for planning your shoots in Paris, notably in the GUIDELINES FOR FILMING IN PARIS section at
http://www.parisfilm.fr/fr/guidetournages.html, and for all requests for shooting authorizations.
 


 III. LOOKING FOR FUNDING
 
  1. Do Film France and the film commissions financially support film shoots?

NO. Film France and the film commissions don't deliver financial aid. Our free services help production teams save time and our knowledge of the French territories can also help to cut costs.
 


  2. Does Film France know about the different ways of funding a project?

YES. Every year, Film France edits an English-language guide to co-production that explains to foreign producers how the French system works. Film France also plays an active role in the TRIP, the tax rebate for international production. See below

The team is at the disposal of film producers all year long to educate them about film funds in the country's territories.
 


  3. What is the TRIP?

The TRIP (tax rebate for international production) is a fiscal measure voted upon in December of 2008 that aims to make France competitive on the international filmmaking marketplace. The measure hopes to attract foreign productions whose dramatic content contains elements that highlight French culture and heritage.

See all of the information about the TRIP and the role of Film France.

 


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