Monday, June 24, 2024

What to Do, How to Act, and Common Mistakes When Filming Abroad

Anyone eager to see their work come to life should enjoy the filming process. It’s common to feel overwhelmed by the cultural differences you encounter while traveling overseas; taking some time off to adjust to your new surroundings is a good idea. Make sure you and your project have everything you need before boarding the airline.

Your To-Do List

Your list of things to bring with you on a trip abroad may seem infinite. Here are a few of the most important factors to think about that will enhance your time spent filming overseas.


Before setting out on your trip, double-check that you have all the required documentation. If the official language of the country is different from your own, both languages must be included on the filming permit. Consent forms signed by persons appearing in the film should also be written in the local language and translated into English if necessary.

You may rest easy knowing that your investment is protected by having both an insurance policy and a list of emergency contact information for your personnel on hand. You can’t protect yourself from threats unless you know what they are. Always carefully examine any insurance policies before signing.

You may also require a release to show that you have the right to utilise someone else’s music in your film. If you’re looking to cut down on the number of permissions you need to utilize music in your film, composing your score is the way to go. ┬áIf you want to shoot frequently in foreign locations, a carnet may be useful for transporting your camera gear over international borders.

A Fixer

Don’t leave until you’ve engaged a fixer, who will most likely live in the country you’re visiting. If you’re planning on filming in a foreign country, hiring a fixer is a must. They will be able to communicate with whomever you need to reach because of their familiarity with the language and culture. If you are not fluent in the language spoken in your destination country, a fixer may be your biggest asset.

Charter Flights

There is a benefit to flying privately. While the more luxurious mode of transportation may be more expensive, it can help give your project a more polished appearance. Private planes typically seat anywhere from four to twenty passengers, so you may need to pick and select who you bring along. If your squad is small enough, however, everyone could squeeze in. Renting a private plane might inspire your team and make the whole thing feel more real.

Steps to Take

Customs in other countries may differ from those in your own. To lead by example for the rest of your team, you need to know how to conduct yourself properly. While it is recommended that you learn as much as possible about your final location before you leave, there are several things you should always have on hand.

Be Environmentally Conscious

You should always show proper courtesy to the locals wherever you go. Respect the local people and the laws of the country you’re filming in to set a good example for your crew. Pick up rubbish and put it in the right containers to be environmentally responsible. Don’t be a jerk and say anything negative about anyone or anything. You can never tell when someone will find value in something, so always act respectfully.

Be fluent in the language

Learning the language of the place you’re visiting can make your stay more comfortable and enjoyable. While fluency isn’t required if you have a “fixer,” it is helpful to know at least a few useful words and sentences in the local language.

Don’t Forget Your Identity

You are a filmmaker, and you are not here to sightsee but to make a fantastic film. Allow yourself to take in the sights, sounds, and tastes of the host country if you find yourself ahead of schedule or with a free day. You certainly deserve a break, but if you spend more time unwinding than you do working, you’re not exactly inspiring your team. You are the one that moves this initiative ahead, so keep that in mind.

Typical Errors

It’s crucial to identify any common blunders. When you’re well-prepared for the event, you’ll make fewer mistakes and be more likely to stick to the plan.

Not Attempting to Locate Suitable Accommodations

You may need extra time to finish recording because things didn’t go as planned. To ensure you have enough time to complete the production, it is recommended that you request additional days of filming. You can extend your stay with the help of the hotel’s staff. If you purchase additional days at the time of your first reservation, you may be eligible for a prorated refund if you end up not using all of them.

Try to make the best of things even if circumstances prevent you from extending your stay. When shooting in more than one city, it may be necessary to rent various hotels or villas. You shouldn’t anticipate that your crew will be able to return to the host accommodation at the end of every stop. Keeping everyone on the same page is a simple but effective method of meeting a deadline that will have a positive impact on the entire project.

Working Too Hard

You should prioritise getting the filming done rather than sightseeing while abroad. However, no one will look forward to finishing the job if you and your team are overworked. Ensure that your crew has plenty of downtimes to experience the host country.

Planning might help you strike a balance between work and travel. Consider how many days you’ll need to spend filming in a single place. Travel time should also be factored in. Once you’ve mapped out your entire week, don’t forget to schedule some downtime. If you don’t need as much daylight, you may start filming later one day. Make it possible for your team to do cool stuff, and they’ll remember this project with fondness.

Failing to Prepare

Whether you’re heading out into the woods or staying inside to shoot, you’ll need a packing list to ensure you have everything you need for your trip. Get started on it several months in advance, and add to it whenever you can.

Keep this list close at hand; digital storage on your phone is one alternative. A portable steamer and some pain relievers will come in handy after long days of work, so don’t leave home without these.

Most Importantly, Have Fun While You’re Away!

Don’t procrastinate until the last minute before leaving on your international trip. Production times often run over, so it’s important to plan and keep a flexible schedule that allows for both work and downtime. You and your crew will have a fantastic time making this film.