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know about dubai film permits how to get it for shooting in dubai

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Dubai is one of the most popular destinations across the world with vibrant and almost heart-throbbing sceneries which makes it one of the most wanting shooting sites for filmmakers. However, as much as it has the potential to offer life into films, it is also needed that one must keep some basic points in mind beforehand to ensure hassle-free and sedulous experience while filming in Dubai.

Here is the overview of the step-by-step process to get the permit to film in Dubai:

  • Appointing a Commissioned UAE-licensed production company
  • Required Permits
  • Processing Charges
  • Hiring Manager
  • Rules and Regulations

How to Get Permits?

The first and foremost step is to get a filming permit. Shooting permits are required for audio/visual productions in public/ government-operated or private property, whether it is indoor or outdoor. The permit is issued by 'The Dubai Film and TV Commission' (DFTC) which is the sole and significant authority to get in touch with.

Further, it is responsible to establish liaison with other government bodies which include:

  • the selected location's provider (be it government, semi-government or private owners),
  • support system which will assist you while shooting in a particular area like public service officials and authorities like the Police, Transportation, Municipality And Government organizations such as the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (Dubai)

Shooting permit criteria :

In the process to obtain a permit to film one must know the criteria or category of the application under which the permit will be acquired.

Permits are needed for the following Basis.

  • Based on the applicant: The applicant can be an individual, corporation, or company, anyone who requires the permit needs to officially assign a UAE-licensed production company/commissioning entity to obtain the shooting permit.
  • Based on shooting location: Permits are applicable for the public, government, semi-government, private locations that are available for shooting purposes. Permits are applicable for indoors as well as outdoor shooting.
  • Based on media: Film, audio & video, media platforms, online platforms, television, mobile phones, print media all are required to get the permit.
  • Based on the type of content: Advertisements, Short-films, movies, documentaries, radio broadcasting, photography all are mandated to get the permit.

All of the above-mentioned criteria require permits and have to get in touch with the DFTC which is the only council to be in direct contact with anyone who seeks to film in Dubai.

Fact to remember

Earlier 'The Location Approval Services' (LAS) office of Dubai Studio City, used to the authority to handle shoots approvals. But now DFTC is inclusive of it. LAS contributed much in the growth of the media industry of Dubai by facilitating over 5,900 productions comprising a number of niches such as blockbusters, independent movies, scripted and reality TV shows, press/brand/corporate commercials and videos.

What will be Processing Charges?

Application Fee

The second step is to pay a non-refundable fee to apply for the required permit or in other words the application fee which is of 500 United Arab Emirates Dirham (AED). Requests for several days and multiple locations can be included in one application.

Details Required for the Application:

The UAE-licensed company appointed by you will manage the application. However, the following details are to be provided for the application to them:

1. Information of the Company/production such as

    • Name of the company
    • Website address
    • Phone Number

2. The number and names of people involved in the shoot and their copy of the ticket

3. Details regarding the filming which includes requirements of content, objective and type of production.

Location Charges:

There are separate charges as per the location as well the production type :

Location Charges as per production type:

Production type Charges in AED Allowed duration
Scripted Long-Films such as Films, TV series, documentaries 2,500 up to 30 days
Long Films that are it scripted such as reality TV shows, magazine shows, lifestyle shows 2,500 Up to 30 days
News and press releases No charges Up to 30 days
Commercials online or Television-based 2,500 Up to 3 days
Corporate events, content, videos 2,500 Up to 1 week
Stills or video footage of the city 2,500 Up to 2 weeks
Aerial filming No Charges Up to 1 week

Location Charges as per ownership:

Public locations: Depends upon the kind of content and project as mentioned above

Private locations: A maximum of AED 25,000 per day can be charged at private locations. However, the full and complete fee will be in the hands of the location owner and have a chance to vary depending upon the demands and requirements of the production. Private locations owners have the right to charge additional fees to the production company for extra services during the shoot such as cleaning, security, luxury requirements, etc.

Semi government: Similar to private locations, locations that owned in such order again have the right to ask for additional fees for extra benefits demanded by the production company.

Fee to handle permit :

As mentioned above No individual, group company or anyone who wishes to film in Dubai can shoot without appointing a local UAE-licensed production company that is going to handle all the permit related operations. This is a mandate condition and won't be allowed otherwise.

The handling charges of such companies may differ from company to company and ranging from AED 1000-3000.

Hiring Location In-charges or Managers :

According to the regulations, a location in-charge or manager who is aware and responsible to handle issues regarding rules and issues in case of violation or simply information purposes must be appointed. The manager must be present at all times, at all venues for your production as well as the local production house. The measure is to check both the companies and establish a hassle-free, no-confusion experience for anyone who has come for the sole purpose to film, promote, and contribute to Dubai's Media Industry. In case of any careless, prohibited action the local firm will be responsible for the consequences and thus the appointment of one manager is necessary. It can cost additional as per the individual demands.

What are the Rules and Regulations that are to be followed?

At all conditions, anyone who has a bright vision to capture Dubai's beauty must be aware of that Dubai is a disciplined city that doesn't compromise with its rules and regulations. Diligence and respect to a city's rules and regulations must be followed at all costs. It must be a concern that no kind of violation takes place which can lead to harmful consequences or action against you.

  • To ensure that letter of 'No Objection' is needed, verify that you have no problem, objection regarding the rules of Dubai which includes the appointment of local UAE licensed firm to assist you.
  • After the completion of all the needed steps from submission of application, mandatory charges all handled under the assistance of the commissioned body along with the No objection certificate. The permit is issued within 5-6 working days.
  • Violation of any of the above non-compromising conditions or in case of not appointing any local licensed production company which is responsible to be the guide through all the official protocols will be illegal and may cost you fine up to AED 500,000 or sentence to Dubai prison.
  • Dubai is an international destination that attracts filmmakers, tourists, or even simple travel enthusiasts from all over the world. This beautiful, one of a kind, home to the World tallest building Burj-Khalifa is famous for not only its fine and luxurious locations but also for its discipline and rules, executed best. No matter if it?s Dubai or any other city one must always ensure beforehand of the system and procedures of the city.
  • And, now you have all to capture, Dubai the wise choice and the mesmerizing land of dreams in your frame.
  • For More info You can visit Official Website
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