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Old March 10th, 2005, 08:37 PM   #1
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Questions about shooting in Japan

I'm going to be shooting for a documentary in Japan. It is mostly going to involve cars. I've looked all over and cannot find if their shooting regulations are any different from ours. Also I need to know if I will need waivers for both US and Japan. Is there any thing else I would need to know?
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Old March 14th, 2005, 08:00 PM   #2
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I've heard you don't need any sort of permits. Just make sure you don't create a big scene. If your busting out documentry style shooting then I think there shouldn't be a problem. Correct me if I'm wrong. I think most of Asia is like this.
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Old March 18th, 2005, 03:37 AM   #3
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It's a paradox.

One the one hand Japan is one of the more difficult places in which to be granted official permission to shoot. Prepare yourself for a lot of time on the phone to Japan (meaning some member of your party speaking Japanese).. a lot of faxes to person after person, department and department.. a lack of inclination by the Japanese to explain what is needed... a lot of surprises and, frequently, outright denial of permission.

One the other hand, Tokyo (anyway) is one of the easiest places in which to run and gun. If your crew is relatively minimal in size it is better not to seek official permission. The Japanese are very reluctant to interfere or even interrupt and whenever they do you will probably have already been shooting for a considerable time. When this happens, it will hopefully be acceptable to you to move on. In today's world of prosumer digital video cams, and assuming you don't respond to people asking what you are doing by hyping it up and saying you are making a serious pro film then you will not even cause a ripple.
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Old March 18th, 2005, 03:39 AM   #4
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'I need to know if I will need waivers for both US and Japan'

also, I don't know why you would think you would need a waiver for US - despite the history.
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Old March 18th, 2005, 06:57 AM   #5
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Sorry, I meant release forms. Thanks for the help. This is by no means a large scale production, and if anything I'll most likely appear to be a tourist. Also a couple shots (racing) will be bad with the law in the first place, so I imagine I'll just try to film like I would here.
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