Guidelines For Filming In Namibia During COVID-19

The Namibia Film Commission has issued guidelines for filming during coronavirus. From cast and crew testing to protective equipment and on-site organization, the safety regulations aim at reducing the spread of the virus while shooting a film.

The Film Commission said these measures are aggregate of official guidelines from authorities applying to workplaces, building sites, the food service sector, hairdressers, and private individuals, which have been practically applied to film sets.

PREREQUISITE RULES
• All government health alert and public protocols restrictions must be adhered to, including: Movement, Social distancing restrictions, wearing masks, Sanitizing vehicles, equipment, cutlery, etc..
• All crew and talent, must provide the production company producer (prior to the shoot date) a non-disclosure agreement outlining their travel throughout the previous four-week period.
• All crew and talent must provide to the production company producer (prior to the shoot date) with a Health Declaration, outlining any contact with someone who has a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19.
• Any crew who have traveled to high risk countries or have been in contact with an individual with COVID-19 during that four-week period must not participate on the shoot.
• Any shoot attendee who feels unwell prior to the shoot, must contact the production company for replacement.

ON SET BEHAVIOR
• A system should be utilized to limit numbers on set by the production company.
• All shoot attendees must undergo temperature checks by the on-set nurse, or a designated crew member, twice a day – morning and after lunch.
• Crew to be issued an identifier once they pass temperature.
screening – for instance wearing of a green sticker for clear screening identification.
• Any person with a temperature exceeding 37 degrees.
Celsius, is considered feverish and must be removed from set
• Any shoot attendee who feels unwell during the course of the shoot must immediately report to the producer of the production company.
• Be respectful of people’s personal space and avoid hugging, touching or handshakes.
• All crew to wear face masks throughout the course of shoots – to be provided by production company.
• Make-up artists, hair stylist, wardrobe must wear eye protection due to close proximity to talent.
• Where possible, talent should undertake their own make-up “minor touch ups” throughout shooting, instead of the make-up artist, to avoid contact with talent’s perspiration.
• Catering departments to consider disposable cups and utensils for meals and tea breaks.
• Water bottles must be labelled for each crew to avoid cross contamination and only one bottle used by each shoot attendee throughout the course of the shoot.
• Camera to be two meters away from talent at all times.
• All equipment must be sanitized daily, before and after each shoot.

ON SET HYGIENE
• Hand washing and and bacterial solutions to be placed on set and used throughout the shoot by all crew and talent.
• When shooting in studio, studios must have undertaken a ‘deep clean’ before and after each shoot. Production companies must obtain written validation from studios prior to pre-light or shoot.
• Cleaning must be undertaken throughout the shoot day especially in common areas such as wardrobe and make-up rooms.
• Bathrooms must be frequently cleaned throughout the course of the shoot.
• Boom mic’s only (so voice-to-camera scripts should be reviewed), prior to shooting.
• Make-up department to step up cleaning protocols and use single use brushes and applicators. All other equipment must undergo deep cleaning prior and post any shoot.
• Hair extensions must undergo deep cleaning before and after any application.
• Standby props to step up hygiene practices.
• Art department must step up cleaning of props and surfaces throughout the shoot and between takes.
• Catering department must sanitize the hands of cast and crew before meals are provided and enforce the 1 meter social distancing rule at all times.
• Vehicle hire for crew and talent must undergo deep cleaning prior to shoot hire.
• Key crew such as camera department must have ‘pocket’
hand sanitizers to be applied frequently.
• Wardrobe must be certified to have undergone deep cleaning before and after shoots.
• Waste management removal must be carried out frequently, throughout the shoot.
• These guidance messages should be posted on the shoot location in bathrooms, make-up room, wardrobe, etc…

FOREIGN PRODUCTIONS
• The Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration and the Namibia Film Commission will reissue film permits and temporary work visas at no cost, until all ports of entry are open.
• Foreign productions are advised to change their production
dates and furnace Namibia Film Commission and Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration with previously approved permits/visas and proof of payment.
• Those who find themselves already in Namibia, whose visas have expired during the State of Emergency, are required to apply for an extension, if they have not completed their production. They must furnish the Commission with proof of current status.
• Those who have completed their productions must apply for a holiday visa extension.

A staff member from the Film Commission will be on set to observe the adherence to the above specified regulations until the situation normalizes.

The Namibia Film Commission will also provide letters of permission to film for ease of business and undertake to assist local productions in meeting hygiene requirements such as masks, sanitizers and temperature gauges. To be considered for this assistance, contact Gideon Kamati @ +264 81379 7531 or info@nfc.na

(IMAGES: Behind the scenes footage of film sets by Namib Film. )