Set Protocol

Set protocol encompasses all aspects of working on a set, from safety to team work to troubleshooting. The following are some guidelines on how to run an efficient set.

The Call Sheet

This is perhaps the most important tool. The daily call sheet is a filmmaking term for a sheet of paper issued to the cast and crew of a film production, created by an assistant director, informing them where and when they should report for a particular day of shooting.

The production schedule is listed by call time, the time when people are expected to start work on a film set.

Contact information (e.g. phone numbers and email addresses of crew members and other contacts), the schedule for the day, which scenes and script pages are being shot, and the address of the shoot location.

Information about cast transportation arrangements, parking instructions and safety notes.

Logistical information regarding the location. It is common to find such items as weather information, sunrise / sunset times, local hospitals, restaurants and hardware stores on call sheets.

Work Hours, Wrap and Turnaround

No shooting day should exceed 12 hours, not including a meal break. Enough time must be allowed within the 12 hour shoot day to have an orderly wrap. Turnaround must be honored, meaning the entire cast and crew should be given 12 hours of rest between wrap and the next day’s call time.

Meal Breaks

A meal must always be served no more than six hours after crew call. All meals should be nutritionally balanced and enough must be provided for the entire crew and cast. A space should be designated to serve lunch where everyone can sit down and have at least 30 minutes to eat.

Nutrition and Hydration

Food and drinks, also known as craft services, should be available to crew members throughout the entire work day. A variety of snacks should be offered, such as fruits, vegetables, snack bars and candy. Water must be a staple on every set along with both caffeinated and decaffeinated drink options.

Holding Areas

A “holding area” must be provided as close to the shooting set as possible. The space should offer protection from the elements, such as heat, cold, rain or wind.

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