Industry Report: Green Production - no (false) excuses! II, Berlinale Co-Production Market
Green Film Shooting: Ecologically-friendly alternatives
by Birgit Heidsiek
- Ecoprod Charter members present their sustainable solutions for Film/ TV
With the launch of the green Charter for audiovisual companies, Ecoprod has taken the progressive approach to introduce sustainability step by step to all companies which are involved in the Film/TV production process. “Studios as well as service companies participate by acting sustainably. And to take it a step further, we offer innovative, absolutely carbon-free solutions. We’ve been working closely with the CNC (Centre national du cinéma), which has a fund dedicated to technical innovation in the production process”, says Olivier-René Veillon, Founding Member of Ecoprod and Chief Executive Officer of Île-de-France Film Commission. “We have the tools. We have the financing. Now, for the companies, it’s simply a matter of strategy and administration.”
Since the Ecoprod Charter was launched in spring 2014, it has been signed by more than 61 members. Among them is Cyril Barnier, Founder of Alternature Média, a full-service company which offers production, cinematography, and post-production services. “All of the products consumed during filming are bio-friendly or local, and we collect the refuse we create”, emphasizes Barnier. “We manage our budget in favor of studio management products and equipment.” For aerial shots, Alternature Média has a drone that works with a GoPro.
“Drones are also considered as an ecologically-friendly alternative to certain standard film shots”, says Sophie Geoffroy, Producer at Athenium Film, which specializes in production, cinematography, post-production, VFX as well as aerial photography. “A crane ties up an entire street and it remains difficult to move if I’m filming in a forest or on the seashore”, Geoffroy points out. “You also have to take into consideration the transportation required to move a crane to a location for a shot that sometimes lasts only a few seconds on screen. The drone is much easier to transport and it sets up very quickly.”
But of course, even a drone has its limitations; for example, a drone never could have done the opening shot of Le Grand Bleu. “Once we have a choice, we go with the more ecological alternative; on the other hand, when it’s necessary and indispensable, we go with the helicopter”, explains the producer. “We know all along that we can later compensate for the carbon consumption by pulling other levers. This is what makes the Carbon’Clap so interesting. It gives you a global overview of the project.”
According to Athenium Film, the tools and guides set forth by Ecoprod are easy, practical, and quickly put to use. “It’s a good tool for clients, and it gives them a chance to learn where the areas of improvement lie, those areas that don’t harm a project’s artistic vision.” For Yann Coatsaliou, President of the production company 360 Médias, the Ecoprod Charter subscribes to a set of political choices which he has already adopted. “In smaller work environments, it’s easy, since I’ve got a free hand to pull lots of different levers.”
The Charter is a reference, identity branding for all companies in the film industry engaged in an eco-responsible process, which is one of the dimensions of CSR — Corporate Social Responsibility. This new tool represents a guideline that aids companies in the progressive adoption of an eco-responsible approach through the constant improvement of the information delivered, as well as through reflection and implementation. “Companies are developing new lighting systems, drones, and green data centers. Technological innovation allows us to live comfortably”, sums up Geoffroy. “We could stay in Aquitaine, birthplace of the drone, without changing our relationship with either clients or lighting equipment. Eco-friendly is above all very friendly!”
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