The City of Cape Town reopens film permit office

Film permits can now be processed. (Photo by CineDirektor FILMS from Pexels)
Film permits can now be processed. (Photo by CineDirektor FILMS from Pexels)

The City of Cape Town's film permit office at the Civic Centre has reopened for business. The office resumed partial operations on Thursday, 21 May and will now start processing applications. 

According to a press release from the City opening this sector is in line with the National Government announcement allowing local production film companies to return to work during lockdown Level 4.

Earlier this month, South Africa's film and TV industry got the green light to reopen. Filming resumed in studios from Monday, 4 May.

READ MORE: SA's film and TV industry back to work amid Covid-19 – without extras or studio audiences

"This is an important industry because not only does it provide entertainment, it is a great financial contributor to the local economy with an estimated R3.5 billion a year and employs thousands of people, creating job opportunities for our local Cape Town communities," said the City's Executive Mayor, Dan Plato.

The office has developed Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) aimed at ensuring all film workplaces adhere to regulations as required by the National Disaster Management Act.

"This document was shared with members of the film industry for comment, and they have agreed to abide by the strict guidelines aimed at avoiding the spread of COVID-19. It also outlines the basic technical measures the companies have to put in place in the workplace to contain the spread of the Coronavirus and to protect their employees," said the Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, JP Smith.

The office will only accept online applications, and walk-ins will not be allowed at the Civic Centre. A risk assessment and a Covid-19 mitigation plan for every location being used before a film permit is issued will be required.

"We would like to urge all those attached to the film industry, and who will be going out to film locations, to please adhere to the protocols as well as all applicable regulations in terms of hygiene on set and observing physical distancing to ensure the safety of all those on set," added Smith.   

Compiled by Leandra Engelbrecht