FILM VISA: Requirements, Validity & Processing Time

(Last Updated On: March 18, 2019)

WHAT IS FILM VISA?

A ‘Film VISA’ can be said as the newest entry among the other visas. It is granted to individuals who are coming into India for shooting purposes. This includes features such as film shooting, television or reality show, serials and Cinema shooting and others.

It comes under the category of Indian visa types and is one of the newest entries in the list.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA:

To be eligible for the Visa, an individual needs to be engaged in the following activities:

  • Feature Film Shooting
  • Cinema shooting
  • Television shooting
  • Commercial Serial Shooting
  • Reality T. V. show shooting

Every traveler needs to have a valid visa to regulate traveling activities in India. In addition to that, you also required possessing a valid passport with a valid Indian visa before you start your travel to India.

DURATION AND VALIDITY:

  • Talking about the duration of this Visa, it is usually issued as per the schedule submitted or 1 year whichever is less. There is the availability of Single or Double or multiple entry film visas.
  • And when it comes to the validity of this Visa, it commences from the date of visa issuance and not from the date of entry into India.

THE WHOLE PROCESS:

One needs to follow the following step which is a two-step process in order to obtain this Visa for the purpose of documentary film making in India.

STEP 1:

Before Applying For Visa:

You need to take into account the following few things before applying for the Visa.

  • Copy of the detailed shooting Script
  • Details of the concept of the film if the shooting involves T.V. serial or shows
  • Visiting Film crew members details
  • Shooting location of the respective film
  • Letter of intent which should include the production schedule, details of crew and cast members, location of the shooting, the purpose of the shoot, and other details.

STEP 2:

Application form:

The applicants need to submit their fully completed application form with complete documents & full payment through the post, In-Person or through a Third Party Agent.

HOW TO APPLY?

There is no need of going directly to the Government of India as you can easily fill the application online. All you need to do is to identify your visa category, type of Visa, document checklist, time duration, processing time, and fees.

DOCUMENTS REQUIRED:

There are a number of document required before applying for the Film Visa in India. This includes the following stuff:

  • PASSPORT: You need to have your passport with the validity of a minimum of 180 days with at least two blank pages.
  • VISA FEE: You need to have the correct visa fee with you while applying for the respective visa.
  • PHOTOGRAPHS: Next, you need to have is the two recent 50 x 50 mm size photographs of yours and it must be according to the required specifications of the photo as mentioned per rules.
  • APPLICATION FORM: You need to have your application form filled properly along with the declaration of all the relevant information. All the columns of the form are mandatory and must be filled properly as the best of your knowledge.
  • DETAILED SYNOPSIS
  • DETAILS OF ITINERARY: You need to mention all of your Itinerary details such as details of your ports of entry and exit from India and more.
  • BIO-PROFILE: The bio-profile of the journalist or the film-director is required.
  • DETAILS OF PRODUCTION AGENCY: Brief presentation of the production agency is also required.
  • DETAILS OF CREW MEMBERS: There is also a requirement of giving all the details of crew members by presenting their list along with the details such as name and surname as featuring in the passport, contact coordinates (telephone & e-mail), profession, nationality, date, and place of birth, passport number & validity.

OTHER REQUIREMENTS:

  • It is mandatory that all the pages of the filming application form must be printed on the letterhead paper of the company.
  • The Undertaking need to be duly signed, dated and stamped.
  • There is also a requirement of two copies of the duly filled application form.

PROCESSING TIME:

Talking about the processing time of this visa in India, it varies from application to application at the sole discretion of the High Commission of India.

Regular Cases for the Film Visa may take a minimum of 3 to 5 working days.

But applications in the following categories may take longer to be processed:

  • Where clearance from India is necessary
  • Nationals or origin of Pakistan: In case of Pakistani applicants, the minimum time period is of 7-8 weeks
  • Nationals of Sri Lanka, China, Bangladesh, Afghanistan & UK: Minimum 15 working days

The processing times for visas are based upon the estimates only. It also considered the information and experience of the Indian High Commission and Consulates into account.

How to get permission for film shooting in India?

There are a number of things one needs to know for carrying out shooting activities in India. You need to get permission for film shooting in India and also need to follow the following set of rules.

  • One needs to attain the recommendation of the Ministry that provides facilities to the film units.
  • Along with that, there is a need for four copies of the detailed shooting script with its synopsis to get the approval.
  • Next, there is a need for detailed particulars of the members of the filming team. It includes the number and validity dates of their passports, nationality details, permanent and temporary addresses etc.
  • You can avail the India filming permit if the film is shot according to the script as approved by the Government of India.
  • All the shooting activities should be done in the presence of a Liaison Officer, being provided by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
  • The producer of the film will need to consider all the rules and regulations related to Import/Export and Foreign Exchange.
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