Simply, location filming means that you are shooting in the actual setting the story takes places rather than in a studio. A soundstage is a soundproof building or room used for the production of film and television content. It is sound proofed so that sound can be recorded along with the images. Adversely, location shooting is the shooting of a film or television production in a real world setting instead of using a soundstage. The location could be interior or exterior and some filming may be based in the location the story is set, or it may stand in for a different locale.
A benefit of shooting in a studio space is that the environment can be completely controlled, which is a key difference between studio and location filming. The environment of the studio can be set for the type of production that is being filmed. Weather can be created in a studio space as well as it being a normal temperature and this enables filming in regular working hours. This is a factor that can be a challenge when filming on location because – as we know – weather can be unpredictable. Therefore trying to film outside can be affected by this, in that it will often be required to await the correct weather conditions for your production or filming cannot continue. Additionally, shooting on location could be interfered by unwanted surrounding noise, dependent on location.
A perk of filming on location is that it can be cost-effective as there will be minimal set design and construction overheads. However, this will also depend on where the production is being filmed because if the chosen location is in a remote area it could cause other hindrances to the project. It can be expensive to take a whole crew to a remote location and this may also incur additional costs with regards to accommodation and hospitality for all crew to last as long as filming takes. This could potentially use a large sum of the production budget. Filming in a studio could be expensive due the studio being a blank canvas, meaning it would cost a lot to construct sets as required for each scene depending on the production.
Carrying out a production in a studio space can be a benefit due to uncertainty surrounding the duration of filming. Studio managers are used to this, which means that they can offer some leeway time for the production to be completed. However, availability can be a problem for shooting on location. This is because the space is only available at the owner’s convenience. This can put pressure on a project to be finished if they are running out of time, or else they would then have to find a different location which could delay filming.
With regards to access, shooting in a studio can be easier as there is usually a specific area for loading equipment in and out efficiently. On the other hand, accessibility for location shooting will depend on the chosen location and how remote it may be.
Finding a location to film can be difficult depending on the owner and government regulations related to the chosen area. For example: the owner may need to be convinced that hosting a production would be beneficial before they sign off and give permission for the filming to take place. Another point to consider is that the chosen location of filming must not interfere with any government regulations. If it does then discussions would need to take place in advance to ensure that guidelines are agreed so filming can begin in line with the necessary timescale. None of these issues would be a problem for filming on a soundstage as regulations are already set in place with the venue upon opening.
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