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The TOTEM Poll: Totally Off Topic, Everything Media
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Old October 28th, 2007, 07:19 PM   #1
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Most film/video friendly place

Hi,
I live in the London area and I find that it's a nightmare to film anything, what with the crowds, the noise, the annoying idiots who love to wave at the camera and shout, the impossibility of parking, the demand for huge sums of money for location permissions not to mention the bureaucracy and form filling, so...

I'm wondering if anyone has an opinion as to where the most filming-friendly place in the world is?

Not the place with the best scenery, or most facilities - I'm talking about the place where it's easiest to turn up, set up a camera and film, where the locals are easy going and you can just enjoy film making again?

Maybe if theres a good enough place out there I might consider relocating...
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Old October 28th, 2007, 07:49 PM   #2
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Well Paul....

Now that you asked, I swapped the utter hell of said London for the peace, tranquility, scary drivers and long conversations about sheep, the All Blacks, sheep, dumb sheep and even dumber politicians that is NZ, a couple of years ago.

Turn up and just film? Noo problemo.

Locals easy going? Oh yeah! (just don't mention the All Blacks latest drubbing).

Not quite the semi - Mediteranian weather of London (down here anyway) but tolerable.

If you ever run out of stuff to shoot here, you can skip across the pond to Oz and start all over again.


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Old November 28th, 2007, 05:05 AM   #3
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"the annoying idiots who love to wave at the camera and shout"

You don't get these much in Cologne or Berlin, Germany - however you will have to be careful not to get another camera team in the background of every of your shots ;)

As far as I know Rome is very camera un-friendly. I heard they charge you for setting up a tripod anywhere in the city.
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Old November 28th, 2007, 05:14 AM   #4
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I find Wales quite a pleasant place to shoot. Instead of people waving at the camera, they take one look at it, turn and walk away. It seems the Welsh are a very modest bunch who don't like being on camera.

Nice.
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Old November 30th, 2007, 08:41 PM   #5
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Death Valley
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Old December 30th, 2007, 04:49 AM   #6
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Rub' al Khali, the empty quarter, saudi arabia, its really easy to get location permits there
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Old December 30th, 2007, 12:04 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Paul Jefferies View Post
Maybe if theres a good enough place out there I might consider relocating...
The mid-west of India is very friendly. The officials know all about film, but don't bother with little Z1 shaped cameras. Goa's great - the folks there know it's a little bit of paradise but don't mind sharing. Okay, so Bombay is mad, but so is London.

Imagine a world passed through a graphic equaliser controlled by a teenager then fed through an amplifier that goes beyond 11. The tranquility is very loud.

Bring your NDs and burn your warmcards.
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Old December 30th, 2007, 08:41 PM   #8
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West Sussex is fairly easy going. I did some filming in and around Chichester (Midhurst, Bosham, East Wittering, Bognor) and didn't have any hassles.
I spoke to someone at the county council who basically said they had no problem with it as long as it was just one person with a camcorder, with the proviso that there would be no obstructions or a breach of the peace.

Come to think of it, someone did approach me in East Wittering while I had the camera running and ask "why are you filming him ?, to which I replied, "Because I'm making a film". She seemed quite happy with the explanation and went away.

Places with heightened levels of paranoia can be a bit tricky. I needed to film inside a mainline railway station and did manage to get permission for this, but only after emailing a copy of my public liability insurance to South West Trains.
Also it seems that there are more people in the Portsmouth area who like to stare at the camera, making it necessary on occasions to reshoot parts of scenes.
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Old January 2nd, 2008, 03:58 PM   #9
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Madison, Wisconsin (and the midwest of the United States in general). Never, ever needed a shooting permit in the 15 years I've lived here. People are generally easygoing and tolerant of filmmakers.

Aside from Chicago, the region might seem like a bunch of cow-towns if you're used to the hustle and bustle of London, though.
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Old February 15th, 2008, 10:24 PM   #10
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Louisiana - No Doubt About It.

I filmed my last feature "Geohunt" in Baton Rouge Louisiana in April of last year. The state lured me there with the tax incentives of a 30% return of my production funds in tax credits (thats a hell of a lot of cash to hand back to a businessman in ANY business) but I would go back just for the film offices, the people and the entire state because together they are far more than helpful - they are film friendly.

I live in California just 1 hour out of Los Angeles - and as a Producer I know what resources I need to get the shots in the can. Louisiana is the hotspot. (There are more film jobs available there there than people who can fill them. We were working handicapped because we could not locate enough grips for the lighting crew.)

If I was going to relocate for my work in film - thats where I would go. Good luck!
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Old February 15th, 2008, 10:33 PM   #11
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By the way - Death Valley is in California - and you need a film permit in your own bathroom out here! Seriously - I was hit up by a park ranger in Red Rock Canyon for a film permit - and my 12 year old daughter was working a XL1S at the time shooting cacti! (Geez Dad - I don't even have clue where the record button is - and he's wanting a permit?)

I love California - but it's hard to get by out here with anything being covered in Red tape.
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Old February 15th, 2008, 11:59 PM   #12
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Austin, Texas. Nature. City. Crowds when you want them, Cows when you don't.
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Old February 16th, 2008, 01:14 AM   #13
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Film Friendly locales

I can attest to the friendliness of the folks down here in Tennessee. I live in Knoxville, in the eastern part of the state, at the foothills of the Smoky Mts. There are amazing roads for motorcycle and sports car touring all over the Southest, through Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia and Georgia.

I came from Boston and was used to the usual indifference and hostility to camera crews, as well as the beureocratic and financial hurdles common in urban areas, and both east and west coasts of the USA.

I head up an indie filmmakers group here and have been pretty much amazed at the friendliness and cooperation offered. Permits are only required on Federal, state and municipal property, like state parks, etc.

We have been allowed to take over a historical preservation trust building, a local family owned theater, a '50's era drugstore/soda fountain, a branch library and other buildings. We have been given assistance at no charge and with no permits by police and sheriff depts.

We can freely plant a tripod so long as we do not block foot or street traffic. Every year, we put on a 10hr Film Festival, starting at 8:30am, when the "Essential elements" are announced. Teams then spread out to develop a storyline , begin shooting and editing and return for screenings at 6:30pm, where films are judged and awards presented.

In 2007 we signed up 20 teams and put 160+ filmmakers on the streets of Knoxville, with the consent and support of the regional film commissioner. Several features have been completed over the last couple of years. It doesn't get any friendlier than that.

Pres, Tenn Indie Production and Talent Org, East
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Old February 16th, 2008, 04:29 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Robinson View Post
I find Wales quite a pleasant place to shoot. Instead of people waving at the camera, they take one look at it, turn and walk away. It seems the Welsh are a very modest bunch who don't like being on camera. Nice.
Snowdonia is so full of tourists and suicidal hill walkers that the Welsh speaking locals are probably just fed up with strangers pointing cameras at them.

Also when looking for favours, it helps not to be English :-)
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