The production of motion pictures can be an extremely wasteful operation. Film production is not exactly known for having a favorable impact on the environment, for a number of reasons, including wasted food, abandoned sets, and large energy requirements.
However, it is not necessary for things to be in this state. We are aware that, as an independent film producer, you may be more concerned with simply getting a movie done than with maintaining film production in a sustainable manner. Listen to what we have to say.
In the year 2023, producing environmentally friendly films is simpler than it has ever been. It is now possible for productions of any size or budget to follow suggestions for environmentally responsible filmmaking thanks to groups such as the Sustainable Production Alliance, who are leading the way.
You, too, can contribute to the reduction of the environmental impact of your production by adopting a sustainable lifestyle and making a commitment to sustainability. How? By following our Go-Green Checklist, which provides easy-to-implement advice from our complete analysis of how to make your next film a green one, you may learn how to make your next picture environmentally friendly. Maintaining a healthy cast and crew should be your top priority, but doing so does not have to come at the expense of producing a film that is environmentally responsible.
What Exactly is Meant by “Green Filmmaking”?
It’s possible that you’re curious about the specifics of what makes up sustainable film production. Because of the notoriously inefficient nature of film production throughout its history, a number of the industry’s most prominent entertainment studios and production businesses have come to the conclusion that they need to take action. Producing movies in an environmentally conscious manner might no longer be a choice that’s up for grabs. The Sustainable Production Alliance and the Green Production Guide are two products that came up as a direct result of this endeavor.
Even while the Sustainable Production Alliance is made up of multinational corporations like Disney, Netflix, and NBCUniversal, any production of any size – even one that is led by an independent producer – is able to take steps to protect the environment. In a nutshell, every filmmaker can take steps to ensure that their films have the least amount of negative impact on the surrounding environment that is practically possible.
Recycling paper and using water bottles that can be reused are two examples of the kinds of eco-friendly behaviors that contribute to the production of environmentally conscious films. Renting solar-powered trailers or giving sets are only two examples of activities that fall within this category. Whether they are large or small, all of these procedures go back to the goal of reducing the environmental footprint of your company.
It is essential to realize that producing environmentally friendly films is about more than just production. You can engage in environmentally conscious filmmaking at any stage of production, including pre-production, post-production, and shooting.
What Are The Best Practices for Producing “Green” Films?
The Green Production Guide is a wonderful resource because it details the numerous different eco-friendly filming techniques that are now in use. In addition to that, for the very same reason, it may feel a little bit overwhelming. We have broken down those broad facets of filmmaking into specific suggestions and methods that you may utilize for a shoot that is environmentally friendly.
Select Cast and Crew Members Who Will Adhere to Your Sustainable Film Production Goals
When you are putting together the team for your production, you should keep environmentally conscious filmmaking at the forefront of your mind. Because, well, let me explain why. No one anticipates that you, as an independent film producer, will be responsible for personally supervising each and every environmentally conscious production technique. Simply make sure that you recruit those who are capable of doing so.
It should be made abundantly apparent to the heads of all departments that it is their responsibility to apply the environmentally friendly filmmaking practices that are pertinent to their departments. In addition to this, they are required to make it clear to the other members of their team that adhering to these procedures is mandatory. For more information on production companies that will help you implement your green checklist from start to finish, visit this page.
Employ Artisan Services That Engage in Environmentally Conscious Filming
Let’s begin with the aspect of the filmmaking process that everyone loves the most: the food. When researching companies that provide craft services, check to see that they follow the guidelines for environmentally responsible film production that are provided below. And for any food needs that are not handled by craft services, like as replenishing the kitchen in your office, have your office manager or personal assistants follow the same guidelines:
Put an end to the usage of water bottles and condiments that are disposable
Instead, install water dispensers at the office and have them brought on set or to the site where the production is taking place. Purchase condiments in large quantities, then portion them out into reusable containers.
Compost any leftover food
Do you have any food that can no longer be consumed safely? Compost it and deliver it, if at all possible, to a community garden or another location that welcomes compost.
Avoid things made of foam
If you absolutely must use disposable dining products, stick to paper products that can be recycled or composted rather than foam products, which are now recyclable in some cases but should be avoided to avoid confusion.
Reuse your plates and silverware
Keep reusable plates, bowls, and utensils on hand at your place of business. Do the same thing whenever you can, whether you’re filming or working on-site.
Donate leftover food
Never, ever toss out uneaten food. Donate to a local food bank or other organizations that could benefit from the food commodities you won’t be using in your production if there are any foods that you won’t be utilized for the project.
Employ Environmentally Responsible Practices in Filmmaking, Construction, and Design
The film industry has a reputation for being extremely wasteful, particularly because of the large number of sets, props, and costumes that are created for each movie. After only a few days, or sometimes even hours, of use, all of these tangible goods are frequently discarded as waste. When it comes to cutting down on waste of this kind, you have a few different options. The following are some of those choices:
You should rent costumes, props, and sets
It doesn’t matter if you’re making a historical piece set in the Middle Ages or a science fiction movie set in the far future; the odds are good that a prop or costume house has what you require. Check into renting what you require for your production first to see if you can avoid having to buy or create something brand new for it.
When constructing new buildings, recycled and recyclable materials should be used
No luck finding a rental property? If you have no choice but to construct or make what you require, you should get the goods you require from businesses that deal in recycled or recyclable materials.
Reuse or recycle production materials that have been utilized previously
When a job is finished, you shouldn’t get rid of the set pieces or costumes just yet. Keep them in storage for possible use in the future if you have the room. Sell them to a set, prop, or costume house if you don’t have the storage room for them or if you know you won’t be utilizing them again in the foreseeable future. You may even rent them out to other productions or donate them to such productions.
Utilize Machinery That is Friendly to the Environment and/or Rechargeable
Lighting. Cameras. Computers. Generators. A film set requires a significant amount of equipment and power in order to fulfill its requirements. Follow these guidelines to make the production of the film as environmentally friendly as possible:
LED lights should be used
LED lighting uses less power and generates less heat than traditional lighting. Although it is possible that you will have to pay more for them initially, the money you spend will be recouped because they will typically last for a longer period of time.
When you can make advantage of them, it’s a win-win for everyone involved. When comparing the brightness of incandescent light to that of an LED light, it is important to keep in mind that the brightness of the LED light is measured in lumens, not watts.
Utilize batteries that are capable of being recharged
Whenever it is practical, use rechargeable batteries to power your smaller equipment, such as your headsets, microphones, computers, and any other devices of a similar size.
Rent solar-powered equipment
If you are making a movie that requires trailers for your cast members, you should investigate the possibility of using solar energy to power the trailers. There’s also the possibility that solar-powered generators could fulfill all of your electricity requirements.
Making environmentally conscious movies may be second nature with the help of tools like our Green Filmmaking Checklist. As is the case with any routine, all that is required is the will to follow through and the encouragement of others to do the same. When you are completing your script breakdown is the greatest time to start thinking about how you may reduce your environmental impact.