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Old September 8th, 2006, 01:03 PM   #1
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Ideas for groceries store scene in no-budget movie?

I hope this is the right forum to ask my question: I am looking for ideas on how we might be able to (legally!) shoot a scene that plays inside a groceries store. This is for a no-budget movie that we are doing here in Iowa, more for fun than for anything else, which should be a 30-minute comedy by the time it's all done.

The scene I am asking about plays in a shopping aisle in a groceries store. Doesn't have to be any specific store, as long as the audience will recognize it as a groceries store.

Obviously, one choice is to just start going to local stores and ask their manegement for permission. I just have no idea what responses to expect. I could imagine that even if they are open to the idea, some sort of liability insurance might be required - is this something I need to worry about?

There is currently no distribution planned for this movie. Doesn't mean that it's never going to be in circulation one way or another, but there is promotional effect that we could promise the store manager.

I look forward to hearing your suggestions!

Thanks,
Martin
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Old September 8th, 2006, 08:12 PM   #2
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go to independent own grocery stores vs chain ...
it's up to the owner if they'll require insurance .. be up front about what you intend to shoot , no budget project , no distribution ...
you need to be clear on how long it will take to shoot, how many crew/actors will be there - and if you need to control SOUND .. might be best to come in after hours ( you might pay a employee if you do come in after hours as owner would feel better if someone he knows is there )
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Old September 9th, 2006, 03:12 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Pauly
I just have no idea what responses to expect.
Martin we had to shoot exactly the same scene a couple of weeks ago, It will probably amaze you to know that not only did the shop keeper give us permission but that day our actor fell through and the shop keeper actually stood in for the part! and i tell you wot he was every bit as good as the actor that fell through. Anything can happen if you just ask.

Andy.
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Old September 16th, 2006, 10:07 AM   #4
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I had a concept for a film 3 years ago for my co-director and I to make. It was to take place in a small grocery or convienence store. We were turned down by 4 indie shops, so we skipped out on that idea. The other film we did was much better. Now I'm not saying you need to re-do your script, but be flexible.

Another flick I directed 7 years ago originally took place in a grocery store, but we moved it to a movie theatre. It worked out perfectly.

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Old September 16th, 2006, 11:33 AM   #5
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I am going to shoot a scene in an ethnic grocery store. To get permission from the owners I showed them some material from my previous work and they readily accepted. Maybe it helped that I was a regular customer too. I then proceeded to take lots of pictures to help design the storyboard. I noticed that there is a lot of noise coming from the refrigerators. There is no possibility of turning them off since the food would spoil, so I decided to shoot first and record the sound later.
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Old September 16th, 2006, 11:40 AM   #6
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Excellent work getting in there. Yes, coolers are LOUD (I learned that lesson a few years ago). Best of luck with re-looping the sound. The guys who did the extremely hilarious Chad Vader seemed to have avoided noise somehow.

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Old September 19th, 2006, 12:13 AM   #7
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Martin,

30 miles south of you and I can recommend asking HyVee. They allowed me to do some custom photography in there for a corporate merchandising-service client, I had to ask the Store Director and he was nice about it. I promised I wouldn't show any logos or brands (I didn't) and I went late at night.

Doesn't mean I didn't annoy the low-level employees and suspicious janitors... but I got my shots.
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Old September 19th, 2006, 08:06 AM   #8
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I just thought of a problem: what to do about all those product labels? There is no way I can hide all of them. Do you think it would be fine since none of the brands are American?
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Old September 19th, 2006, 10:38 AM   #9
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Copyrights and trademarks are all the same. Turn the cans around.

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Old September 19th, 2006, 02:31 PM   #10
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One thing that often works when showing up to ask for use of a business is to bring a friend and your camera. Have the friend carry a large camera case/sound equipment or so to show how little equipment you will be bringing. Businesses get scared when you say you want to shoot in their location. They picture truckloads of equipment and armies of people invading their business. They also fear interuptions in their business income. Try to show them you are interested in their well-being and that you would like to shoot after-hours so no disruptions will take place. If you've ever been shooting in someone's businesses and customers start showing up, because you over-ran your time, not a good position to be in. Plus if you shoot after-hours you can lock the door and keep out the general disrupting public.
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