FilmLA Again Will Require Community Filming Surveys For On-Location Shoots

Los Angeles
The downtown Los Angeles skyline Kirby Lee via AP Images

Starting on Friday, FilmLA — the city’s film permit office — again will require many filmmakers to conduct door-to-door Community Filming Surveys as a condition of obtaining permits to shoot on-location throughout Greater Los Angeles.

The surveys, which are designed to mitigate traffic, congestion and noise problems in neighborhoods, were suspended temporarily on June 15, when the city reopened to production. That move was made out of an abundance of caution to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Film LA said.


“Effective August 28th – the City and County of Los Angeles have authorized survey work to resume, with modified requirements for hired Surveyors for the protection of public health,” the permit office said. “FilmLA and City and County representatives, including experts from the LA County Department of Public Health, have worked together to update the Filming Survey guidelines. A new process, based heavily on the protocols applying to door-to-door visits by US Census workers, was adopted by City and County authorities this week. The new process will allow Filming Surveys to resume, while safeguarding the health and safety of residents, business owners and production company personnel.”

FilmLA says it uses feedback from the surveys to gauge neighborhood concerns about proposed filming, although not all on-location filming activity requires a filming survey. For those shoots that do, community participation is strictly voluntary. Most often, surveys are required due to after-hours filming in residential areas, high impact activity such as street closures or significant parking requests, filming for five or more consecutive days in one location, or when there has been historically high amounts of filming frequency in an area.

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