EIDC launches initiative to promote on-location harmony

Directors Guild of America News

September 18, 2003

On September 18, 2003, the Entertainment Industry Development Corporation (EIDC) held a first-of-its-kind meeting to discuss the enforcement of filming permits as well as city and county codes. The meeting was attended by representatives from the DGA, private services who provide off-duty or retired police officers to production companies, several studios and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), Teamsters (which represent location managers), the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), the California Highway Patrol (CHP), and the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD).

Based on years of experience and regular meetings throughout the county with neighborhood groups, the EIDC determined that location burnout and permit enforcement were two of the top concerns. "Even with 40,000–50,000 days of filming annually in Los Angeles — most without any problems at all — the EIDC recognizes the importance of reducing resident and merchant concerns about film production by ensuring a higher level of permit compliance from production companies," said Lindsley Parsons, Jr., EIDC President. "Although film production is a vital economic engine for Los Angeles and actively supported by the community, it is important for production companies to remember that we are guests of the neighborhoods where we film."

DGA Western Executive Director G. Bryan Unger underscored the roles and responsibilities of Guild members to community residents. "Our members constantly walk the tightrope between the creative requirements of production and our obligations to minimize disruption for residents and merchants. In fact, we helped develop a Filmmaker's Code of Conduct, which every member of our Guild receives, to understand how we can lessen the impact of production on neighborhoods."

James D. Brubaker, President of Physical Production at Universal Studios, voiced the opinion of many when he said, "We not only work on the streets here, but we also live here. We want to be good citizens and neighbors too, because that is the way to sustain and grow this important industry and its jobs over the long term."

A smaller working group will be formed to develop and disseminate more information to officers, coordinators, production companies, unit production managers and assistant directors through training sessions, e-mail lists, guidelines and other tools. This committee will include EIDC, LAPD, industry and the private services. Regular meetings of the larger group will be held at least twice a year.