Releases and Permit Basics
For an editorial shoot, the public street of New York are the public streets of New York. In theory, you can shoot what you want. If someone's walking down the block, I can go click, click, click and I can put it in the newspaper tomorrow and say person walking down Park Avenue. No harm, no foul. Okay, if I want to use that in a commercial vein, if that person's wearing Nike sneakers and Nike sees it and says, "Hey, we want to use this." Uh-uh (negative), you know? I gotta go back and find that person, negotiate commercial rights, pay them a fee. Same thing with the environment. If I'm out here on a commercial adventure, I'm gonna have to get permits, film permits. If I have perhaps, high-priced talent, I'm gonna have to get a motor home. I'll need to get a permit to park that motor home. I'll need to get insurance. If I have somebody sort of notable out on the streets in New York, I'm gonna get security. We have a relationship here, because we're based around here we have a relationsh...
ip of long standing with a security firm that employs off-duty New York City police detectives. Plain clothes, badged, armed, two or three of them on the street sort of insures that everything stays nice and calm. Also, the beauty and benefit of having those guys, they're really good guys, and if a beat officer comes along and wants to know what you're doing, they have that relationship with them and they can help you explain what you're doing to the officer on patrol. Anyway, commercial shooting is a hugely different enterprise. Lot of money goes into commercial shooting. You can spend literally thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars an hour out here on the streets of New York to do a full-blown commercial shoot. Did one just last week. The budget was very high. Permits were very dense. Multiple permits had to be had, because there's overlapping jurisdictions. Tonight, we're not going to observe any of that. It's run-and-gun editorial-style shooting, I don't have the worry so much about the implications of my background. I can move and shoot. If someone comes along and says, "You really shouldn't "be shooting here," I'm not gonna pick that fight. You have to choose your battles, so I'm not gonna get into a standoff with somebody over a picture that I can make an equivalent sort of picture down the block. So sometimes, just a mild manner and a happy approach to things is the best ticket you can use out on the streets of New York. Be amiable, be congenial, be forgiving. Be elastic. Can't shoot here? Okay, well how about here? Rock and roll with it.