Filming in Sydney FAQs
We get a lot of questions about filming in Sydney. Do feel free to contact us should you have any specific questions or if there's anything you think needs adding to this list.
Sydney Filming Permission
Can you arrange Sydney filming permission for me?
Yes we can, and it's all online at cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au. Film Me shoots tend to be 'Ultra-Low Impact Filming' as defined by the City of Sydney, so only a free online application is required.
What about higher-impact filming?
Check out this link from the City of Sydney, it has all the details about filming permission you need. We can help guide you through the process.
How long does filming permission processing take?
For Ultra-Low impact filming, it takes at least 2 working days to process. Larger filming permit requests need to be lodged with at least 5 working days lead time.
Can you do drone filming?
We are currently applying for our UAV operator's certificate and will update you when we have this available. The process does take some time.
What are the permit requirements for drone filming?
Commercial drone usage can only be done by a licenced pilot, who has a Remote Pilot's Licence, which requires some basic exams and clearance from CASA. You are breaking the law if you fly a drone for a commercial purpose without having the correct licence. There are various areas where drone filming is not permitted, common sense areas such as near Sydney airport etc, and standard limitations for flying exist, the core one being not within 30m (horizontal) of people or traffic.
When will Film Me have drone capability?
We are working on it and will hopefully have this by June 2016.
Sydney filming equipment
So, honest answer, what equipment do you actually have in-house at Film Me in Sydney?
In-house we have an Arri Alexa Mini with multiple accessories, 3 v-mount batteries and 5x128 gig CFast 2.0 cards. We also have 2 5D MkIII cameras, as well as a number of GoPros and accessories. Lighting-wise we have portable battery-powered LED interview lighting that is perfect for corporate videos. We have the Carl Zeiss EF Lens set, plus an array of Canon lenses.
What staff do you have at Film Me?
Our MD Rupert Chesman just moved to Sydney and filmed everything on film-me.com. We have 4 staff editors who work with us remotely, and are available to the team regardless of filming location. Staff in Dubai work to co-ordinate global shoots, as well as accounts and invoicing.
What is Frame.io and why have you invited me to it?
Frame.io is a collaborative tool that cuts out a lot of the middle man with edit changes and uploading files. Once you've been added to Frame.io, you can immediately view any video that we have uploaded to your project, and comment directly on the video. This cuts out the "I don't like the pink t-shirt somewhere around 0.57" e-mail issue, as you can pause and comment directly at that time code without having to e-mail us. They probably explain it better here:
How do you send files to us?
We will send you a link by WeTransfer, Hightail or Frame.io to download your final file. Do let us know how it will be finally used, so we can ensure it's the correct format for your usage.
Can you send us files on a hard drive or memory stick?
Yes, we are more than happy to copy files over to a hard drive or memory stick media for your usage. Please provide the hard drive, or we will purchase one and add it to the invoice.
Can we have the RAW footage?
Yes, just make sure you have a big enough hard drive to copy everything over.
Do you keep footage forever?
We don't guarantee keeping footage forever and cannot operate as a footage library, but in practice we normally have everything if you're stuck.
What file sizes are we looking at?
For Arri Alexa Mini footage filming in 4K ProRes 4444, it films approximately 10 gigabytes per minute depending on content. A 4 minute video in 4K delivered to you will be around 20 gigabytes in H264 codec. Most 5D MkIII videos we film are around 3-4 minutes long, and 350-400mb in size in HD.
What are 4K, 1080 and 720 on the file names?
We normally deliver videos in 4K, 1080 or 720 resolution. 4K is the maximum resolution we film, which is 3840x2160 pixels and essentially 4x larger than HD. That movie you just saw at the cinema was likely in 2.5k. 1080 is 1920x1080 resolution, known as 'full HD', which is the size of your plasma screen at home. 720 is 1280 x 720 resolution, which is a lower resolution version of HD that you have seen on most YouTube and Vimeo videos released recently. We always send videos in 720 initially as it's a smaller file size. We generally suggest uploading files to Vimeo, Facebook and YouTube in 720 as they display videos in that resolution as standard.
Can you deliver in Flash format?
We simply don't like the quality that flash offers and don't send our videos out in flash format.
Can you deliver on a DVD?
Sorry, as DVD is lower than HD quality we don't have this service available, and don't actually have any computers with DVD drives anymore.
Billing and Invoicing
What's Film Me's legal name, address and ABN?
Film Me Pty Ltd, 2607/9 Angas Street, Meadowbank, 2114 NSW. ABN 57612132395. Film Me HQ is in Dubai, where we have been operating for 5 years, and is a brand of Rupert Chesman FZ LLE. Our address there is Rupert Chesman FZ LLE, PO Box 487177, Dubai, UAE.
Who is Rupert Chesman?
Rupert Chesman is our Managing Director and owner of Film Me.
Where is Rupert Chesman?
Normally in an airport somewhere.
Can you send us a paper invoice?
We work entirely electronically and do not send out paper invoices. As a rule we don't work with companies that require paper invoices, if you do need a piece of paper please download the invoice and print it.
How do we pay you?
Our payment details are at the bottom of every invoice. For larger shoots we require 50 percent upfront payment before shooting commences. Note you do not have the right to use any footage until we have received payment in full.
Can you send me a bank transfer?
Yes absolutely, that is how we make all payments.
Why haven't you paid me yet?
We endeavour to make all payments as swiftly as possible once the project is completed. Do ask if there's something we've missed, we never want any of our awesome suppliers to be out of pocket.
Working for Film Me
I'm about to film for you, what are you expecting?
We always want our videos to be artistic and interesting. Whatever the subject area, you can do something artistic with a macro lens or the 85mm 1.2, ensure you get the wides but then get fun and creative. Surprise us, don't just keep it safe.
Can I come and work for Film Me?
Much like any other production company, our workload grows and shrinks depending on commissions. There was one fairly busy week in Dubai where we had to make 80 videos in 4 days, then some weeks where nothing is happening at all. We love to have staff who work hard during the busy days, then are happy to relax when it's not. Send us an e-mail to admin@ with your CV, but please note we do receive a lot of CVs and cannot respond to everybody.
Why haven't you replied to my e-mail with my CV?
We get a lot of CVs coming in from all around the world and cannot reply to every e-mail that we receive. We also receive a lot of messages from people who have no media experience who want to work in our IT department. We don't have an IT department.