FilmLA received 777 film permit applications, an increase of 43.1% compared to the prior month.
A late-month surge in production established last month as the third busiest FilmLA has experienced since last June, although activity remains around 40% below normal for this time of year.
Over the last 37 weeks, FilmLA has processed approximately 5,533 film permit applications spanning 3,789 unique projects.
Film permit applications had declined from November 2020 through January 2021, with the surge in COVID-19 cases leading to a substantial drop in local production.
After health officials gave production permission to move forward, applications peaked in October (880 applications), declining to 813 in November, 613 in December and just 543 in January.
“As new COVID-19 case counts diminish and more projects restart production, we are optimistic that the local film economy will soon be back on track,” said FilmLA President Paul Audley, who notes that, despite the desire to return to work, the industry remains vigilant on safety protocols. “On-location filming, for months conducted safely in observance of strict health protocols, will surely rise again with the reopening of businesses and expanding vaccine availability.”
Awards show continue to observe safety protocols as well. This weekend, the Grammys Awards will be held outdoors, with the Academy Awards eyeing options including Union Station. Audley says producers are being forced to be creative because of the pandemic. “A major event with thousands of people in one place can’t happen, so this is allowing for more creativity for these awards shows to try to experiment with new ways of doing it.”
Some of the series that recently resumed filming include “All American” (The CW), “Impeachment: American Crime Story” (FX), “Curb Your Enthusiasm” (HBO), “Dear White People” (Netflix), “Generation” (HBO Max), “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC), “Lone Star” (Fox), “Seal Team” (CBS), “Shameless” (Showtime), “This Is Us” (NBC) and “You” (Netflix).
The reality TV shows that also resumed production include “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” and “Vanderpump Dogs.”
While mostly independent films applied for permits, a few larger productions started. Namely, Michael Bay’s “Ambulance” with Jake Gyllenhaal and A24’s “C’Mon C’Mon” starring Joaquin Phoenix.