STAY AWAY FROM PEOPLE AND COMPANIES OFFERING PRODUCTION SUPPORT SERVICES THAT ARE NOT REGISTERED AT THE FILM COMMISION.
As the leading economy in the Caribbean, the Dominican Republic offers an ideal environment for foreign producers to take advantage of a well established industry for film, video & photo productions.
Anyways, you might find along the way, people or companies that offers production support services that are NOT registered at the Film Commision.
And there’s where all problems begin.
Only registered producers at the Film Commision can get all film and photo permits, customs clearance documents and all related paperwork. A registered producer has an unique ID at the Film Commision. It has the name of the producer and ID registry number. It’s also signed by the Film Commisioner and has a security stamp.
You should ask for this document at the time you request any kind of service. Also, make sure your producer sends it’s “CEDULA” (PERSONAL ID). Full name of the producer must match the Film Commision’s document.
This Film Commision document, issued for local producers is NOT TRANSFERABLE.
Upon arrival in the country, you should have on hand copies of all documents issued both by CUSTOMS and the Film Commision. Make sure also, that the producer you hire in the country waits for you at the airport with ALL ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS. At customs (airport), all gear and equipment is gonna be checked by customs officials in front of you and the local producer.
All papers are gonna by stamped on ARRIVAL AND DEPARTURE.
If you don’t have the proper documents, all your gear and equipment is gonna be detained and taken away from you at customs. After that, you will have to pay a huge fine and of course, expending more than 5 days to take the equipment out.
There have been many cases involving major production companies getting all their gear and equipment retained at customs for not having the corresponding permits and documents. Also, for not having a local producer registered at the Film Commision.
A lot of cases can be found on the internet regarding frauds made by UNREGISTERED LOCAL PRODUCERS OR INDIVIDUALS CLAIMING TO BE FILM COMMISION AGENTS.
Any person that claims to be an “AMERICAN OR EUROPEAN COMPANY IN DOMINICAN REPUBLIC” and because of that they don’t need permits either from CUSTOMS OR THE FILM COMMISION is SCAMMING YOU.
So, REMEMBER: Keep yourself in a legal and safe enviroment while working in Dominican Republic.