Filming Guidelines

The following guidelines provide a comprehensive outline for commercial and student filming and photography so that space and facilities on the UBC campus can be used by external media production organizations as locations for filming or photography without disruption or cost to the university.

These guidelines take into account:

  • The complex requirements of production companies in utilizing locations, the physical resources of the university that might be suitable for their requirements, and the interests of university students and staff.
  • Minimizing disruption of normal university activities.
  • Assisting non-commercial production agencies and public broadcasting institutions in creating educational and public interest programs.
  • Providing and controling general access to the university exterior locations and to provide limited access to interior locations for commercial production companies producing feature films, commercials, still photography and general entertainment programs.
  • Recovering all costs of the film liaison service and provide financial compensation to occupants of buildings where interior filming is undertaken.
  • Preserving the reputation and public image of the University.

The guidelines do not apply to news and coverage of university events and/or activities managed by UBC Public Affairs. Coverage of sports events will be approved and arranged by the UBC Department of Athletics and Recreation. When news and public affairs coverage includes complex documentary filming, the above guidelines will apply, including fees, and assistance which may be provided by the Events & Film Liaison.

All other requests to use university buildings, ground and facilities for the purposes of filming will be handled by the Events & Film Liaison.

The Events & Film Liaison will coordinate access to all areas on the UBC campus, except for the Health Sciences Centre Hospital that operates as a separate entity, or those areas of campus where leases have been granted to third parties. Access to areas off-campus such as Oyster River Farm, UBC Research Forests and UBC at Robson Square are also coordinated by the Events & Film Liaison.

  • Film location requests will not be approved which seriously disrupt the normal activities of the university.
  • For interior locations, approval must be received from the administrative officer(s) of the division(s) occupying the space requested.
  • No major set construction or alteration of buildings will be permitted. Any set decoration must be clearly specified in writing and all areas occupied in connection with the filming must be returned to their normal condition.
  • A program script must be submitted prior to the commencement of filming so that the Events & Film Liaison can ascertain that such filming will not damage the reputation or image of the university. In the event that a script is not available, a storyboard and detailed outline must be provided.
  • The producer is encouraged to involve students from UBC film students from the UBC Department of Theatre & Film as observers while filming on campus.

For productions that do not involve university events and activities, every effort should be made to maintain the anonymity of the university, including promotion and credits; the university, however, may require that it be identified if it feels this would be in its interest.

Whenever a location fee is being charged, a UBC "Contract for Filming" or "Contract for Photography" agreement will be entered into between the university and the production agency. This is the only contractual agreeement regarding filming that the University will enter into.

  • The university uses a standard location contract outlining the responsibilities of both parties during the film shoot. This contract cannot be changed or amended. An appendix to the contract specifies the dates/times/location of filming, and the applicable location fee.
  • Requests for filming must normally be made at least two (2) weeks in advance, and in no case will be accepted fewer than ten (10) days in advance.
  • Notwithstanding the terms and conditions of these guidelines, UBC Community Development, Campus & Community Planning, has the right to refuse any request for filming on the premises of the university. Factors in such a decision may include but are not limited to the reputation and financial security of the production agency, and the history of previous dealings with that agency.

Information for production companies considering filming at UBC is available from Creative BC and UBC Community Development, Campus & Community Planning.