Commercial Filming, News, Documentaries, and Student Filming Policy

Requests for commercial and student filming in Columbia spaces require filming permits or contracts and are subject to the following protocols.

Reason(s) for the Policy
  • In order to film on campus, approval must be granted by key University stakeholders.
  • To request permission to film, understand the fees, review the request process and submit an application. No requests will be considered without a complete application. 

Commercial films are defined as all feature films, commercials, still photography ads, and any other non-news related film/photography ventures. All production companies wishing to scout locations on campus are to be directed to the Executive Director of University Event Management. The Executive Director will review the request and forward it to proper departments for review. The Offices of Communications and Public Affairs and the General Counsel must review the premise/genre of the shoot. Permission from the Building Manager and appropriate Deans needs to be procured, contracts need to be signed, and insurance certificates need to be on file before final filming arrangements are made. Hourly rates are charged for all types of commercial work. The academic and event calendar may prohibit commercial filming during certain times of the year.

All news media, documentary, and film interview requests are handled through the Office of Communications and Public Affairs in 304 Low Library, 212-854-5573.

Columbia film students interested in filming on campus must complete a student filming application, which is available on the University Events Management website at Columbia students are not charged for using University space.

Commercial film, hard news, documentaries, and student film requests can be refused for reasons of time constraints if made later than 10 business days prior to requested schedule.