So, You Want to Film a Movie in Thailand?

April 5, 2019

With stunning natural beauty and some amazing film locations, it’s no surprise that Thailand is a top choice of both professionals and amateurs alike when it comes to filming. Big name blockbusters such as The Hangover 2, Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, Rambo, and No Escape have scenes filmed in Thailand, and it’s a popular spot for travel video makers, too. But if you want to make a film in Thailand, there are plenty of factors to take into consideration. Whether you’re making a short film or working on the next big movie, here’s what you need to think about when filming in this country.

Royalty Free Photo

#1. Getting Permission:

First of all, make sure that you’ve got permission to film there. Shooting without a permit is a violation of Thai law, and if you’re caught doing so, you’ll have both your equipment and anything that you’ve filmed so far confiscated, so it’s really not worth the risk. To get a permit for filming, you’ll need to apply to the Thailand Film Office. Your Thai film coordinator, who you’ll be required to hire, will be able to arrange this for you.

You can find a film coordinator through the Film Office, who will be able to provide you with an extensive list. They will offer general production support in addition to helping with tax and obtaining work permits for any foreign film crew. You will not be charged for the permit but bear in mind that some locations will charge a fee to film. This may be negotiable depending on the location.

#2. Thai Film Production Companies:

The best way to find an experienced crew to help you with the making of your film in Thailand is to hire a local production company. Film production Thailand is a big industry, and the country is home to several world-class studios producing feature films, TV commercials, series, TV productions, digital media, and more. And, a local film crew will have a better understanding of filming rules and regulations, plus a familiarity with the local area. Lastly, it’s a cheaper option for any filmmaker, as there’s no need to apply for work permits for a Thai crew.

#3. Restrictions to Be Aware Of:

In general, pretty much anything goes when you’re filming in Thailand. Whether you’re making a short drama, a documentary series, or a comedy feature film, you’ll be good to go as soon as the Thai Film Office has approved your production and provided you with a permit. However, there are some restrictions to be aware of before you begin. Ideally, you shouldn’t have anything in the script that could be deemed offensive to Thailand’s customs, culture, religion, and national institutions – you’re expected to have respect for the country and any necessary changes will be advised before a permit is granted. The film should not pose a threat to security and you’ll need to ensure that any film work carried out is not harmful to the environment in any way.

When it comes to filming in Thailand, this glorious country opens up a sea of opportunity!