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FILM AND TV PRODUCTIONS

Why the film and TV ad industry must have adequate risk cover

By our News Team | 2021

Film and TV ad productions present a range of potential risk and loss exposures during production, an insurance expert warns.

The film and TV production sector is a big component of the advertising and marketing industries. It is one that has struggled more than most with Covid-19, but there is hope that in South Africa, at least, there are signs of recovery.

Kathleen Davis, Film and Entertainment Broker at GIB Insurance Brokers, says adequate production insurance cover is essential. It is useful to cover for content such as films, TV commercials, TV series’, documentaries, music videos, education films, corporate programmes or theatrical productions.

“[Such] productions present a range of potential losses and risk exposures during the production period. It is a fairly complex and interlinked issue. Production houses need to be aware of all the elements that impact on insurance and adequate cover,” she says.

TV and film productions

Photo by Jose Pedro Ortiz

Keeping safe behind the scenes

Filmmakers must strive to keep actors, stunt performers, crew and all the extras safe – all the while providing the illusion of danger on the screen. Explosions and dramatic stunts in exotic locations keep audiences off the edge of their seats. While the scenes may be fictional, the risk to the crew remains real. Davis emphasises that, without cover, producers cannot get the completion bond, or the guarantees that financiers require in order to lend to productions.

While, regrettably, there is no Covid-19 cover available, this is something the film sector must learn to survive without. With strict safety protocols in place, productions can continue. 

“Although they cannot be insured for cancellations because of Covid-19 on a shoot, sufficient cover for other production delays should give producers peace of mind,” Davis says.

Apart from the financial guarantees, a variety of exposures may need to be addressed to avoid unnecessary risks. With proper precautions, many of the risks are insurable, although cover remains subject to underwriter’s conditions, terms and exclusions.

GIB has seen instances of water pipe bursts on location, resulting in extensive damage to the set, props or wardrobe; a freak storm washing away the entrance to a location, injury to a director during filming, and injuries to members of a stunt crew.

 

Source: GIB Insurance Brokers

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