A: Film Clayton is an initiative of the Clayton County Office of Economic Development. Our primary responsibility is to attract feature film, television, video and commercial productions to shoot on-location in Clayton County, Georgia. Film Clayton serves as the liaison/concierge between a film production, the local government, and the community. Landing a film project generates revenue and jobs for our local community. Think of a local film commission as a community’s “sales team,” competing against other communities to land the business.
Film Clayton provides complimentary location scouting services to filmmakers for major productions. We provide pre-production research for support, accommodations, production personnel, state and local regulations, and provide assistance during principal photography to include permitting and coordination of local law enforcement and utilities requirements.
Film Clayton facilitates the legal process between local government and out-of-state production companies prior to commencement of principal photography. Staff members of Film Clayton are on call at all times during a production to address needs and issues as they arise.
A: Film Clayton is a designated ‘Camera Ready Community,’ which is a program of the Georgia Film, Music and Digital Entertainment Office. While our parent company serves the entire state of Georgia, our geographically assigned area is Clayton County, Georgia.
A: Without plentiful location options, our ability to attract more production to our community is hindered. We encourage everyone to consider allowing a qualified film project to scout your property.
Film Clayton keeps electronic photo files, along with lists of leads for potential locations of all types: historic homes, businesses, warehouses, parks, hospitals, farms, swamps, schools, jails and much more. It can be very exciting to work with a production company and we depend upon the Clayton County community to participate and help us grow this important and growing industry in Georgia. If you feel your property has a unique quality suitable for the big screen, please email high resolution, panoramic photos of your property to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the complete address of the property, owner name, contact phone number and email address, and any interesting facts about the property. Include a photo release statement in your email submission as follows:
Photo Release Statement and Permission to Use Photographs
Subject: Photo Submission for Film Clayton Location Scout Photo Database and Marketing
By accepting the following:
I grant permission to Film Clayton, its representatives and employees, to use any photographs I submit of my property in connection with the above-referenced subject. I authorize Film Clayton, its assignees and transferees to copyright, use and publish the same in print and/or electronically.
I agree that Film Clayton may use such photographs of me, or my property, with or without my name and for any lawful purpose, including such purposes as publicity, marketing, illustrations, advertising, and Web content. Whether published or not, I agree that I am submitting this picture(s) without any expectation of reimbursement, monetary or otherwise, exclusive of negotiated fees (if applicable) if property is selected for a filming project.
I hereby relinquish any right that I may have to examine or approve the completed product or products, or the advertising copy, printed material or Web content that may be used in conjunction therewith or the use to which it may be applied.
I hereby affirm that I am over the age of 18 and have the right to contract in my own name. I have read the above authorization, release and agreement, prior to its execution and fully understand the contents thereof. This agreement shall be binding upon me and my heirs, legal representatives and assignees.
I have read, understand and accept the above statements. – insert you full name here.
A: Many productions will advertise a casting call for background actors. Film Clayton is not a casting agency. Film Clayton posts casting and crew calls to our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/claytoncountyfilmoffice. We use social media to keep our community apprised of job opportunities in the film industry. Most casting agencies wish to receive an electronic photo with your name, age, height, and contact information. Others will host “open calls” and invite you to a centrally located site where they will take their own photos of you and collect information at that time. Be sure to read instructions and follow their directions very carefully.
A: Once a production company has decided to film in an area, it will open a production office, advertise for crew, and provide an email where resumes can be sent. Labor unions typically provide members’ resumes to projects and offer their own hotlines and availability lists.
A: Production offices are extremely busy and cannot field hundreds of calls from job seekers as they are preparing to film. Production companies are not trying to avoid you; they are simply trying to do their work, control interruptions, and protect the privacy of the film project, which Film Clayton takes very seriously.
A: Think about filming the same way you would think about a parade of other special event on the street in front of your home. Just like a parade, film production companies request permission to use public streets the same way. Any city would be particularly eager to grant permission since filming creates positive economic benefits for a municipality: locals gain employment, hotels secure guests, businesses land customers and so on.
At the same time, filmmakers are careful not to ask for more parking than they need. Sometimes they need cars removed because the actors are going to be filmed in front of a particular building and for continuity reasons the producers need to control the street (so cars aren’t popping in and out). Clayton County allows the use of public streets to park necessary movie trucks and equipment close to the set. The goal is to keep the cast, crew, and the public safe so parking plans are made with these factors in mind.
A: A day in the life of a location scout is never boring and always challenging. It is tremendously hard work, with unexpected long hours and miles of local traveling to compete against other communities for film business that directly affects their community’s bottom line. Most people are surprised when they discover how much goes on behind the scenes even before a movie starts filming. To be fully prepared to handle the needs of the filmmakers and location managers, location scouts must take the initiative to ensure they are well informed about all aspects of the filmmaking process and the inventory (to include specifications) of properties within the local community. It is important for location scouts to network with other film industry professionals throughout the country to keep apprised of upcoming projects that they may have an opportunity to attract to their local community.
A: Filmmaking provides enormous economic impact to whatever locality wins the business. Films that end up working in Georgia may have initially contacted numerous other states and countries for location photos. The reason for so much competition is that films employ many locals, sometimes for months at a time. Filmmakers stay in hotels and short-term housing; they rent cars: they buy and rent enormous amounts of supplies, feed hundreds of people one, two or three meals a day for several months, and often make improvements to locations along the way. Filming is a clean industry (as opposed to certain types of manufacturing) that provides professional training and creates infrastructure that can attract even more filming once word begins to spread that a community is particularly easy with which to work.
The direct economic benefit of film production in Georgia came to nearly $3.1 billion in 2012.
A: At any given time, numerous productions are scouting locations for commercials, television series and feature films. Ask for identification (look for a business card bearing the name of the individual, the production company, and the film’s working title) and call Film Clayton at 770-477-4450 to verify the identity of the scout and/or the production. While Film Clayton is not always aware of each individual project, we often have a relationship with the scout and sometimes with the production company the scout represents.
If a production wishes to work with you, their location representative (location manager, production manager, art director, production designer, producer, etc.) should walk you through the entire process. Expect them to explain the project and detail the scenes planned for your property. They should also tell you about any alterations planned for your property and ask for your permission. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and voice your concerns.
The film company will also need to know any special circumstances. For example, if you are on a well and septic tank and would be unable to accommodate a few dozen people (don’t worry, large projects bring their own facilities), or if you just landscaped an area you need the crew to avoid), work it out with the locations representative. They want to leave a good impression of the production company, so they should leave each location in at least as good a condition as they found it.
You know your property better than anyone, so offer ideas on where to park crew vehicles, where crew can have meals, and, on smaller projects, where makeup and wardrobe might be housed.
The production company will have a location agreement. It should contain liability language, the exact locations they wish to use, and a description of the number of days/approximate hours/dates. It should also spell out ownership of the film footage (the production company keeps all rights) and other legal matters. The location fee, or, in some cases, the donation, is spelled out in this document. You should feel comfortable with all terms prior to signing the agreement. Larger, well-known production companies have been in the business a very long time and are not in the business of taking advantage of you. They are typically very easy to work with, but expect you to respect the terms of the agreement and to keep all details of the project strictly confidential.
The production company should provide you with proof of insurance protection naming you specifically on the insurance certificate with an appropriate amount of insurance. If this is not offered, request a copy prior to the commencement of any work.
Finally, have fun and enjoy the process. Most film crews are made up of hardworking, interesting, and fun people. If they have the time, they often enjoy discussing their work and are grateful that you have allowed them onto your property. Always ask the production before you invite ANYONE onto the set. In most cases, sets are absolutely closed to anyone other than film crew and talent.
Should you have other questions, please contact us!