If your film requires scenic outdoor shots – from remote, rolling hills to well-maintained trails or rocky outcroppings – chances are, Missouri has what you need. With 92 state parks and historic sites and 13 national parks and national historic trails, the Show-Me State’s varied terrain will make a picture-perfect backdrop for any scene.
State Parks and Historic Sites
Before going on location at a state park, a Commercial Production Application must be completed and submitted to the facility manager of the park you intend to use at least one month prior to the date of the shoot. Once your application is submitted, it will go through a review process and the Division of State Parks grant a permit.
Applications will be reviewed for appropriateness of the topic, the length of time and degree the facility will be impacted, what alterations are requested and how much staff time is needed to manage the situation.
After your commercial production request is approved, you will be asked to provide proof of General Liability Insurance coverage. Also, financial negotiations may begin. If it can be shown that the state park system can benefit from your production, fees may be reduced or waived entirely. Otherwise, the fee will be determined by the scope of the project and the impact on park staff and resources.
Your team will be expected to restore the area to its original condition after filming. Also, in an effort to preserve natural and cultural resources, park facility managers may limit access to certain areas, limit group sizes, restrict or refuse vegetation clearing, or refuse activities that may harass wildlife.
National Parks and Historic Sites
Under federal law, all commercial filming within National Parks or Historic Sites requires a permit, but the fee associated with the permit varies depending on the size of the crew.
If your crew only includes one or two people with handheld devices or a tripod only, there is no fee associated with the permit application.
For all other productions, the fee varies from $150/day for crews made up of 10 people or fewer, up to $750/day for crews consisting of 50 plus people. In addition, there are terms and conditions for filming in order to protect these beautiful parks, which could include restrictions on the time or location of filming or a bond to ensure the restoration of the filming area, if necessary.
The National Park Service encourages directly contacting the specific park you’re interested in filming at before starting commercial filming activities.
For more details about filming in National Parks, please click here.