Land Use - Film

British Columbia is a top film and television production center in North America. To accommodate the growing industry, the Commercial Film Tenure Program makes Crown land available for the production of motion pictures and television programs, as well as still photography for commercial, educational and promotional purposes.

Permission to use Crown land is obtained by application to the Province.

The quick-pace film industry requires a quick approval process. The Province has established a condensed application process, with an efficient environmental impact assessment supported by other agencies of government. Applications may be processed in as little as three days.

Application Documents

In addition to reading the information on this webpage, the following documents should be reviewed prior to submitting your application:

The following documents must be completed prior to submitting your application:

Complete Application Package which includes:

Who May Apply?

Companies must be registered in British Columbia to be eligible for commercial film tenures. Even companies already registered outside the province must register in B.C. to obtain a commercial film tenure. Under certain circumstances, private individuals may apply on behalf of a film company.

Types of Tenure

Either a temporary licence or a standard licence may be granted.

  • A Commercial Film temporary licence is by far the most common form of film tenure. It permits use of Crown land for up to 6 months, where the use is limited to the filming of scenery or backdrops involving no structural improvements, camps or large equipment.
  • A Licence of Occupation is required where a commercial film production calls for substantial improvements, camps, vehicles, large equipment or modifications to the land. A licence is normally issued for one year.

Fees & Costs

You will be required to pay an application fee when you submit your application, as identified in the Crown land fees schedule (PDF).

Required for a commercial film tenure are:

  • Rent – please contact FrontCounter BC for more information,
  • A $5,000 security deposit as outlined in the general commercial policy, and
  • A minimum of $3 million in liability insurance

Additional Requirements

The most common reason for delay is submission of an incomplete application, which is then returned to the applicant.

If your application is accepted, you will be notified if Advertising is required. Please wait for confirmation before advertising.

If you have questions regarding any aspect of the application process, a specific file or a proposal about a specific area, please contact FrontCounter BC.


Consulting with First Nations

Consultation with First Nations is an important part of land and resource decision-making.

Find out more about this process.

FrontCounter BC

Contact Information

Contact us if you would like more information on Crown land use.

For questions regarding specific files or a proposal about a specific area, please contact FrontCounter BC (see contact info above)

Telephone: 250 387-6730
Fax: 250 356-6791
4th Fl - 780 Blanshard St Victoria, BC V8W 2H1
Land Tenures Branch PO Box 9352 Stn Prov Govt Victoria, BC V8W 9N1
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