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UK Production shooting in France/employment rules

I'm aiming to take a small cast and crew from the UK (all paid in the UK) to France to shoot a micro-budget feature. We'll be shooting on a private estate.

Is there any obligation on me to report what we're doing to any authority in France? And do I have to abide by French employment rules, or can I work to UK rules? We are not working with a French co-producer.

I would be grateful if anyone had any advice on this, or a suggestion of who I could talk to to get a definitive answer.

Many thanks in advance.

  • I don't have access to chapter & verse on employment legislation or local union regs, but having spent some time in France ..:
    For a micro-budget venture otherwise contractually centred in the UK using UK personnel, effectively you're simply hiring the location for a few days.
    From your outline details, it does not sound like you need to - evidently, the proprietor of the estate would likely have to be mindful of the commercial nature of the undertaking (if it's of that character - else it's a private affair) ... Normal UK protocols/rules would apply, of course (e.g. insurance etc.).
    Do know though that, with anglo-crew especially, the nearer the Med & mid-summer the shoot, the longer you need to schedule for lunch ;)

    3 years ago
  • Nick - thanks ever so much for this. Much appreciated.

    3 years ago
  • Hi. I live in Paris and echo Nick Cheel's opinion (especially the bit about lunch). Here, however, is a link to the Paris Film Office, just in case you'd like to make further enquiries: If your shoot is not in Paris, I imagine they could provide you with the contact details to their regional equivalent. Bonne chance!

    3 years ago
    • Thanks Lisa - that's really helpful. I'm trying to stay off the film offices' radar, for obvious reasons.

      3 years ago
  • Hi there this is my first post on SP. I have worked a lot in France in film and have also brought over actors etc from the UK to work on projects in France. You just need to make sure that you have adequate insurance for them, otherwise regarding payments etc, pay in the uk but don't start getting involved with paying in France and declaring in the Uk etc, it will be a nightmare. Keep it nice and simple and make sure everyone is covered and fed French film catering is the biz, I have seen 3 people serve a crew of 40 in under an hour and they always have a bottle of good wine on the table...good luck or Merde for your project.

    3 years ago
  • Thanks Christopher, this just confirms my initial thoughts, so it's great to have confirmation. Food seems to be a theme in this thread, so we'll make sure to give them good nosh!

    3 years ago
  • from my experience of filming in France: make sure you have agreements in writing about everything, as verbal agreements, honoured by courts in the UK, do not count in France. And get receipts for all payments. Be prepared so that if anything goes wrong you are covered.

    3 years ago
  • HI OLYER, yes in france you need use some french cast or crew, But I think only when you co prod with french prod.. this is yr own money, so you can go by the french Mairie and ask them, also is depens if you shoot in Big city, or small village, much difference..
    Beter you earn french language also
    PS: Im born french myself
    contact .chat if necessary , I can find out a lot for you there also, send more details, when , where etc..

    1 year ago