Hobby Film, which specializes in commercials, published the notice, titled “The New Rulebook: Guidelines for Film Production in Sweden and Denmark,” on its website. The company said that at present there were no specific government guidelines in place for the film and TV industries regarding resuming shoots, but that its guide was compiled from broader applicable rules that apply to all work environments in the countries.
The notice says that Sweden, which imposed one of the softest lockdowns in Europe, is now allowing film shoots of up to 50 people. It also claims that Denmark allowed production to resume April 14.
There is a lengthy list of procedures for producers to follow to ensure that sets meet COVID-19 related requirements. They include enabling required social distancing of 2 meters between each individual on set, meaning leaner crews and necessitating that different departments work sequentially. It adds that, for interior shoots, every person inside at any one time requires 4 meters squared of personal space, and that larger crowd scenes requiring close proximity are not possible at present, though smaller gatherings are fine.
The group estimates that the smaller crews and sequential workflow “will cause a small decrease in productivity. We estimate this at about 10%,” according to the site.
The guide says that all people on set are required to adhere to health measures to minimize the spread of the virus. Alcohol hand sanitzer must be provided at all entry points and common areas, and information on proper hand hygiene must be distributed. Regular set cleaning needs to take place, and any workstation used by more than one person must be cleaned in between transfer. Anyone displaying coronavirus symptoms is not permitted on set. Masks must also be provided for any occasion when social distancing measures are difficult to maintain consistently.
Practical measures suggested for producers include making actors sanitize prior to scenes involving physical contact, limiting the number of crew in close proximity to key personnel (it lists camera operator, focus puller and sound recordist in spaces of less than 20m2), providing all food individually and having no self-service stands such as coffee stations, and restricting hair and make-up and styling to featured cast only.
Casting should be handled over video conference or tapes, it adds, and the casting of families should use real families when possible. Anyone in a group deemed to be at-risk should not be cast (it says in practicality this is anyone over 70, but notes that it does not want to discriminate on the basis of age).
Additional measures, which the producer says go beyond government guidelines, include utilizing masks widely on sets, and increased ventilation of interior spaces.
The guide adds that at present it is permitted to film in public spaces in Sweden, while Denmark requires police approval as there is a restriction on public gatherings above 10 people (though this does not apply to work). Hobby Film said that the guide covers both countries, with the more stricter guideline employed when local advice differs between the two nations.
It is not immediately clear if any significant film shoots have resumed in either of the two countries, though Deadline is in touch with local producers to see when they expect to resume. However, any suggestion that film and TV production may at some point in the near future get back underway, with appropriate coronavirus related precautions, will be welcome news for out of work crew around the world.