Brisbane City Council regulates film production to ensure that activities are carried out safely and disruption to residents and businesses is minimised. Permits are not required for filming solely on private property. If you are planning to film in public areas, find out:
- when you need a permit
- when no permit is needed
- properties not managed by Council
- how to apply
- film permits for students
- more information
The following activities require a permit:
- closing or use of public areas (for example, parks, malls, roadways, footpaths)
- vehicle access to public areas (for example, parks, malls, roadways, footpaths)
- using freestanding equipment (for example, lighting, generators, dolly tracks and tripods) that may be a danger to the public or restrict public use
- leaving freestanding equipment unattended
- leaving cables on the ground in a public area
- using equipment such as catering and changing facilities
- student films in public areas
A permit is not required for the following:
- filming solely on private property
- filming for news, current affairs or live to air reporting
- wedding photography not using props or the special use of a section of a Council park
The following locations are not managed by Council so you do not require a permit from Council. You will need to contact these properties directly to request permission to use them for filming:
- Goodwill Pedestrian Bridge via Department of Public Housing and Works - phone Steve Watson during business hours on 07 3008 2821 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Queens Park (opposite Treasury Casino), corner George, Elizabeth and William streets, Brisbane, via Queensland Government - phone Steve Watson during business hours on 07 3008 2821 or email email@example.com
- Southbank Parklands
- Roma Street Parklands
- Kurilpa Bridge via Department of Public Housing and Works - phone Steve Watson during business hours on 07 3008 2821 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Kurilpa Park - phone Steve Watson during business hours on 07 3008 2821 or email email@example.com
- Oxley Creek Common - phone Steve Watson during business hours on 07 3008 2821 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Queensland Rail stations and locations
- Fort Lytton National Park
- Go Between Bridge - Transurban.
Brisbane's film liaison office provides convenient services to filmmakers. If a permit is required, you will need to submit an application to Council a minimum of five working days before the filming.
If you propose to film on a road, you can apply for a road closure as part of your Filming in Brisbane Permit application. Find out more about road closures for filming.
- Supporting documents
Prepare the attachments required for your online application as Word, PDF or JPG files. Required attachments include:
- Site map for each location - a photo or detailed map with locations and equipment clearly marked
- Certificate of Currency for Public Liability Insurance
- for a minimum of AU$20 million, noting Brisbane City Council as an interested party for all claims for personal injury and damage to property arising out of the filming
- the dates of the certificate need to cover the proposed filming dates (plus any contingency dates for wet weather)
- Resident/business notification letter
- a copy of the letter you will use to inform any residents and businesses that may be affected by filming activities
- you can use the Resident/business notification letter template (Word - 28kb) to prepare this letter
- Safe work method statement/risk assessment
- Budget outline for production
- For vox pops:
- interview questions to be asked to members of the public
- For students:
- a letter from the lecturer confirming:
- proof of enrolment in the relevant subject/unit
- the filming is part of course assessment
- a letter from the lecturer confirming:
- For road closures:
- a copy of the Traffic Management Plan for road closure in accordance with the Department of Transport and Main Roads' Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) Part 3 - Works on Road
- a completed Queensland Police service Application for General Permit (road closure). If you require a copy of this form, contact the Film Approvals Liaison Officer on 133 BNE (133 263).
- Filming in Brisbane permit application
Complete the Filming in Brisbane permit application online form and upload your supporting documents
For low impact filming, you must submit the application form with site maps and all supporting documents to Council a minimum of five working days before the filming commences.
For larger projects, you need to submit all information a minimum of one month in advance.
Applications cannot be assessed until all required information is submitted.
Student projects are subject to the same rules and permit requirements as professional productions, however there are some key provisions to note:
- no permit fee - Brisbane City Council waives the film permit fee for student projects
- proof of enrolment - students need to provide a letter from the lecturer confirming:
- proof of enrolment in the relevant subject or field
- the filming is part of the course assessment
- public liability insurance - students must obtain a Certificate of Currency for Public Liability Insurance from their study institution. This needs to be for a minimum of AU$20 million, noting Brisbane City Council as an interested party for all claims for personal injury and damage to property arising out of the filming. The dates of the certificate need to cover the proposed filming dates (plus contingency dates for wet weather).
Planning a film shoot can have its challenges. To make the process easier, minimise the paperwork and focus on the creative side, download the Tips for student film production (Word - 137kb).
An application fee will not be charged in the following situations:
- low impact film productions involving minimal crew
- film productions with a budget of $100,000 or less
- not-for-profit screen industry development organisations
- religious and charitable organisations listed in Appendix A of Council's Schedule of Fees and Charges
- news or current affairs for an existing television program or program with a definite on air schedule
- a story featuring an interview with an approved Council spokesperson
- a story that promotes Brisbane City Council products, services or initiatives
- a program that promotes Brisbane as a destination and credits Brisbane City Council in end credits
- students at school, TAFE, university or those undertaking an approve course
When a fee is charged, the fee is $678.90 (including GST) in 2017-18 financial year. Fees are not payable at the time of submitting the application, but will be invoiced before the permit is issued. When invoiced, you can make payment online or at one of Council's Regional Business Centres.
The fee is a one-off fee for each new production that provides access to approved Council assets for the duration of filming. Where appropriate, a performance bond may be required and Council may negotiate an appropriate fee for direct use of Council assets, including but not limited to:
- use of council car parks
- metered parking spaces
- any after-hours filming requiring Council staff attendance
- Council buildings and areas managed by Council or its representatives, such as Malls and King George Square.
For more information, phone the Film Approvals Liaison Officer on 133 BNE (133 263).