This is “prep” and it’s a time of transformation, when real-life locations become storyboard stand-ins. If you live in the greater Los Angeles area, you’ve seen this up close, as familiar sites take on new roles.
As soon as the set is dressed, the filming takes place. When filming wraps, “strike” cleanup begins, and crew members restore the property to its original condition. Like the prep and filming stages before it, strike is a process that can take days.
Prep and strike are two activities that FilmL.A. views as part of the overall location filming process. Minor prep and strike activity do not require a film permit, so prepping for filming can sometimes begin without FilmL.A.’s knowledge and involvement.
Substantial prep and strike activity — which includes but is not limited to posting for street or lane closures, or the presence of many people or vehicles — does require a permit.
Even when a permit is not required, we regularly distribute prep and strike information through our paper and email-based Notices of Filming. With community-minded sensitivity, we will even rush Notices out, when possible, to ensure their delivery before the first day of minor prep.
It’s all in a day’s work, more than is required of us, and no less than communities deserve.