1. Why film in Cape Town?

    What defines Cape Town as a premier film and media destination is the best “can do” attitude in the business. Beyond world-class skills and infrastructure, it’s our ability to innovate and creatively solve problems that sets the City apart. It’s an approach that adds value, saves time and money and will make any production memorable.  Cape Town is probably most well-known for its incomparable locations and 90% of the world can be doubled within a two-hour drive from the city centre. Additionally, Cape Town offers:

    – The lowest annual operating costs when benchmarked against Johannesburg, New York, Madrid, Mexico, Paris, Hong Kong and London
    – World-class studio facilities and diverse landscapes
    – Skilled production professionals
    – Favourable climate and light
    – Competent, experienced and technically proficient crew and production professionals
    – Specialised services available, including set designers, set builders, stunts, special effects and costumes, among others
    – English widely spoken – and time zone is aligned with Europe
    – Excellent transport, banking and ICT infrastructure
    – Vast tourism and hospitality options, including accommodation, logistics companies and catering services, among others
    – Excellent post production facilities
    – Lengthy daylight hours in summer (average of 15 hours: 5:30am to 20:00pm)
    – High standards of copyright protection

  2. You will need a permit if your shoot:

    – Interrupts traffic on municipal roads or pedestrians on sidewalks;
    – requires wires or cables running across or over sidewalks or municipal roads;
    – requires the use of generators, tripods or dollies on sidewalks or municipal roads;
    – impacts on public use of, or access to, public parking areas, community facilities, beaches, public open spaces and nature reserves under City management;
    – or generates noise and air pollution.

  3. How long will it take to obtain a permit?

    The duration of permitting depends on the complexity and nature of individual film shoots.

    TIER 1: 48 Hours
    – Micro shoot (1 – 3 vehicles and /or <8 people)
    – Small –scale shoot (4-6 vehicles and/or 9 – 5 people)
    – No road closure involved
    – No special effects, stunts or pyrotechnics involved
    – Complies with specified filming hours of 06:00 – 22:00
    – Shoot lasts for <24 hours
    – Minimum noise and/or lighting involved
    – Not an environmentally, culturally or historically sensitive location
    – No structures or sets required (includes minor/portable props)
    – No landform modification and/or vegetation removal involved

    TIER 2: 48+ Hours
    – Medium size shoot (7 -15 vehicles and/or 16 -30 people)
    – Partial road closure and/or minimum road modification required
    – Shoot lasts for 24-48 hours
    – Moderate noise and/or lighting will be generated

    TIER 3: 4+Working Days
    – Large shoot (16 -30 vehicles and 31 -60 people)
    – Very large shoot (>31 vehicles and/or >60 people)
    – Full road closure and/or modification of road involved
    – Special effects and/or stunts and/or pyrotechnics involved
    – Shoot lasts for >48 hours
    – High degree of noise and/or lighting will be generated
    – An environmentally, culturally or historically sensitive location
    – Structures and/or sets will be erected
    – Landform modification and/or vegetation removal is required

  4. Is there still an issue with water?

    After a good season of winter rain Cape Town’s dams are currently sitting at over 70% full and water restrictions have been relaxed. While water remains a precious resource, the City has managed to reduce its daily water usage from 1.2 billion litres a day to just over 500 million – and can rightfully claim to be the most water-savvy city in the world.

    The Film Cape Town initiative will make sure that all productions are carried out with water-saving and sustainability top of mind and that water scarcity isn’t a barrier to production.

  5. Is there an incentive for film?

    Yes! There are four main incentives. Please see the DTI website for more information.

    Kindly note that these are published on 3 yearly basis and can sometimes have updates so do check with your local production team.

  6. Do I need a visa to work on a production in the Cape Town?

    Yes, and depending on your position, and your nationality, it can be a very simple permit or a slightly longer process. Please see http://FIVA.TV for explanations.

  7. What is the procedure for working with children?

    The department of labour has strict guidelines for working with infants, children and youth. Employers must follow their recommendations. Local industry can help you through this process or you can visit the governmental website here.
    Note your local producer and casting agents will help guide you on the paperwork.