Orlando, the county seat of Orange County in Central Florida, has a population of 385,000 within the city limits and 1.3 million in the Metro Statistical Area or MSA. The MSA comprises 14 incorporated cities in four counties and 115 distinctive neighborhoods. Although the city is well-known for its fantastic theme parks like Disney World, there is more to Orlando than that.
Over the past several decades, Orlando has diversified its economic base to manufacturing, high-tech items, and healthcare. Orlando is a culture rich in performing arts, digital media, and the entertainment industries as well as parks, beaches, and other outdoor areas. And the warm weather year-round makes this a popular tourist attraction.
Orlando’s past is chock-full of stories and lore that cannot be proven or supported by historical fact. It is interesting that a city with a storytelling past becomes the location of both Disney’s Hollywood and Universal Studios, the present-day art of storytelling. Whatever the past, Orlando is here and there is something for everyone.
Film Shoot Location Options in Orlando
The locations offered for film shoot locations in Orlando are as diverse as Orlando’s communities and neighborhoods. The venues are residential, specialty commercial spaces with specific aesthetic features or shell spaces for variations in themes and sets. A filmmaker will find a multitude of flavors, scenery, and color in this one Central Florida location.
Before the cameras roll, the pre-production logistics and the elements of this phase need to be in place. The project budget is based on the costs within each phase of staging from script writing to the distribution of the film. While changes can be made and the scope adapted to these changes, the budget needs to be realistic. These numbers need to be based upon all aspects of the ancillary services supporting the film.
- Sound Stage Systems
An important part of constructing a sound stage is the integration of the a/v systems. The technical design of these systems needs to be interchangeable with other communication systems supporting the film. Once designed and integrated, the maintenance, operation, and troubleshooting needs to be contracted with the designer for continuity and efficiency.
All filming within the Orlando region requires a permit. The permit process is centralized for submitting the application package to the Orlando Film Commission. This commission will be the liaison between the producers of the film and the multiple jurisdictions within the region.
Film Shoot Location Companies in Orlando
There are many local companies offering services and products supporting the film industry in Orlando so you will have no trouble making the most of your Orlando film shoot location. The city has been well exposed to the entertainment industry for many decades, and the leaders in local government recognize the important contributions to the economic and labor bases.
- Sound Stage, Inc.
This A/V integration service provider has been in business in Orlando for over 50 years. The designing of the sound and visual systems for a film set is one of the many industries served by Sound Stage, Inc. The technical talent within can design the A/V communications specific to a client’s expectations and provide service and troubleshooting support until the completion of the project.
- Adrenaline Films
An important service of Adrenaline Films is the front-end talent for the setting of the sound stage, the control and make-up rooms, and the warehouse space. This team comprises the vision of the producers and the technical artists of this production company to determine the scope of the pre-production plan.
- Orlando Film Commission
Generally, there is no fee associated with film permits in the Orlando region. However, there will be fees associated with any services needed by a city or of a county, like traffic control, parking, security, and public works. The onus is placed upon the production company to devise a plan to keep the set safe.
Pros and Cons of Film Shoot Locations in Orlando
The advantages and disadvantages of a location set are not linear and cannot be treated as if equal in weight or importance. Each item within the respective columns of pros and cons must be considered individually before you finalize your plans for a film shoot location in Orlando.
- Sales tax exemption
Purchases relating to the film’s production will be eligible for this exemption, with the exception of costs relating to hotel and car rentals. All genres within the production category are invited to apply for the exemption certificate.
The highways from the Orlando International Airport to the downtown core and the outlying areas of the MSA are interconnected and easily traveled. The major arterial roads from the airport will also lead directly to the convention and the tourist corridors to the south.
- Local support
The University of Central Florida and the private colleges in Orlando offer programs in the visual and performing arts and film. The students in these programs and the graduates gain real-life experiences at Disney, Universal and local production companies.
Orlando has a commuter rail system, known as Sun Rail, serving commuters living north and south of the downtown core. However, this rail system does not serve those in the tourist or convention corridors.
Although the climate in Orlando is typical to that of the sub-tropics, it is the daily summer storms that will disrupt an outdoor film shoot.
With 100 being the best, the downtown core of Orlando has a walkability score of 89. However, outside of the core and the established neighborhoods, the city’s overall score falls to 41.
Famous Locations in Orlando
- Leu Gardens
Leu Gardens is a favorite of residents and visitors. The garden is a city-maintained park located in the Audubon Park neighborhood of Orlando. The park tours are self-guided and can be from 1-2 hours depending upon the prerogative of the visitor. Improved paths through the 50 acres will lead through a variety of flowers, plants, trees, and herbs, and tours through the Leu House Museum are daily. Leu Gardens is a popular venue for weddings, events, and private parties.
- Orlando Science Center
The Orlando Science Center is an accredited, hands-on museum hosting nearly 700,000 visitors each year. Within the center’s 4 floors, there is an Imax theater, interactive exhibits, permanent and traveling, and a planetarium. Through the programs in the STEM Discovery Center, it is the mission of the science center to bring science to life and to teach the aspects of science in life.
- Lake Eola Park
This city park circles Lake Eola and the iconic fountain in the heart of downtown and within the historic Eola Heights neighborhood. The improved 0.9-mile walkway around the lake is a respite from city life offered to the residents and the professionals working downtown. The park is also a venue for local concerts, plays, and movies in the Disney amphitheater at the west end of the lake.