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Old December 18th, 2009, 03:52 AM   #16
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Liability insurance aside... Shooting something, and having the right to use and distribute that image for your benifit are two different things depending on what you are shooting.
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Old December 18th, 2009, 06:13 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Rich Mayer View Post
If I ask the film comission I am "CERTAIN" thet will ask me to file this and that and that and all of a sudden I will need to ask 20 different people to move a finger. My question is still the same, if I "get away" with shooting in a city without anybody noticing, do I legally need to provide an "authorization from the city" to release the film?
No. You should not.
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 05:30 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Rich Mayer View Post
My question specifically refers to this case: if I get away with shooting in the streets of Miami without disturbing anybody, I finish my short film and Im fortunate that somebody is interested in distributing it... I already know I need to provide releases from the actors involved, as well as private locations but are they going to ask me "please provide us with your permission from the city of Miami for shooting in its streets"?? or is there a risk that at some point in the future anybody from the city would call me and say "hey where is your permission for shooting in our streets?"

I perfectly understand that if you have a big crew and there is risk of disturbing the peace of a public place you need permission, thats not what Im refering to, Im refering if you shoot with a small crew, fast and you get the shots without bothering anybody, do you still need permission from the city to release a film in this cases?

If you already have the film in the can, no one is going to ask you "did you have the necessary permits when you shot?" if they're considering screening or distributing the film. After the fact like that, the city couldn't come after them for any legal damages anyway so they simply won't care one way or the other. But if you haven't shot yet, there is no single answer to the question in your second paragraph of "do you still need permission?" It all depends on the individual city - some could care less, others require permits for even one guy with a camera. In some metro areas like LA, it can be very different as you just walk across the street out of one jurisdiction and into another.

Why are you so reluctant to call the relevant agencies in the jurisdiction you want to work and simply ask them? The absolute worst thing that can happen is that they tell you what the rules are and you'll learn you need to go through more hassle or expense than you want - they're not going to trace your call and start shadowing you to make sure you don't pull out a camera without a permit. And even more important, why are you so reluctant to make sure you're following the legal straight and narrow path like the rest of the professional community does? You get no medals for circumventing the law and getting away with it. If you can't afford the fees to shoot in Miami, move your location to Fort Lauderdale. It's just as important for a filmaker to be a good citizen and obey the relevant laws as it is for any other sort of business.
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