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U.S.A – Arizona

Arizona Film & Photography Production Services & Camera Crews

Are you a media company, brand, ad agency or production company looking for film / photography production support or shooting crew in Arizona? Contact us for trusted fixers, producers, directors, DoPs, videographers, photographers, and full shooting crews tailored for the specific needs of your project.

Filming in Arizona

For an introduction to shooting in Arizona see below notes on film locations, permits, when to shoot, unique local stories, costs, tax incentives, crews, talent, equipment, communications, art department, studios, post facilities, visas and work permits for filming, transport, film-friendly accommodation, and safety advice.

Arizona Film Locations

From Old West towns to infinity roads through extensive red deserts, from striking modern homes to old Route 66 roadside diners and motels, Arizona offers a wealth of spectacular locations for visiting productions. Agricultural locations of interest include wheat and corn fields, dairy and beef cattle, cotton plantations, and farms growing citrus fruits.

Arizona has hosted many productions including The Revenant (2015), Into The Wild (2007), Transformers (2007), Star Trek: First Contact (1996), Forrest Gump (1994), Tombstone (1993), ¡Three Amigos! (1986), National Lampoon’s Vacation (1983), Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1983), Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), and Planet of the Apes (1968).

Film locations can be divided by the following production service centres:

Flagstaff is the base for accessing the Grand Canyon and Monument Valley. This region of Arizona offers many locations of interest including The Painted Desert, Petrified Forest National Park, Canyon de Chelly National Monument, San Francisco Peaks snow-capped volcanoes (The Revenant (2015)), Red Rock canyons of Sedona, Antelope Canyon, Paria Canyon, Coconino National Forest, Barringer Meteorite Crater, Roden Crater, lush Alpine aspen meadows and ponderosa pine forests, The Wave of Coyote Buttes, Horseshoe Bend in the Colorado River, Lake Powell and Glen Canyon Dam, Navajo Reservations, and Lowell Observatory. Agathla Peak and Kayenta featured in Westworld (2016–). Holbrook, Winslow, and Zeniff featured in Natural Born Killers (1994). 

Tucson is the base for accessing the Saguaro National Park giant saguaro cactus forest (Saguaro cacti only grow in Arizona), Chiricahua National Monument, Kartchner Caverns State Park, Old West towns such as Tombstone (the home of the famed gunfight of the O.K. Corral), San Xavier Spanish mission, Air Force Boneyard, Titan Missile Museum, old mining towns such as Bisbee, old mines, Mexican looking villages, and striking modern homes in spectacular arid settings.

Yuma is the base for accessing Castle Dome Mountains, Rambo Canyon, border towns, old mines, and the Imperial Sand Dunes (located just across the border in California).

Phoenix, the capital of Arizona, offers filmmakers and photographers airports, modern architecture, sport stadiums, college and university campuses, desert golf courses, lakes and rivers, and nearby cattle ranches. Arcosanti is an unfinished experimental town located north of Phoenix. Sun City is a suburban retirement community known for its street network design of concentric circles in four main pinwheels. Looking east the White Mountains featured in The Revenant (2015).

Arizona Film Location Permits

The permitting process varies depending on what part of the state you are shooting in and the type of permit you require. Special permits are required for federal, state and tribal lands. Filming public locations in the city of Phoenix requires a Film and Digital Media Permit which costs $100. Proof of insurance is required. Please contact us for location specific information.

When To Shoot?

Arizona’s climate varies widely across the state. In the lower elevations, the climate is primarily desert, with mild winters and extremely hot summers. Arizona has two short rainy seasons, one in the late summer and another during the winter. The northern third of Arizona is at higher altitude and has colder winters and milder summers.

Public holidays may affect timing, availability and costs. See here for public holiday dates in the United States.

Unique Local Stories

Brands are looking for local stories that match their brand narrative. Our local teams are a great lead for sourcing those unique stories and characters.

If you are looking for stories for your next shoot, send us your brief and we will pitch you ideas.

If you have a unique story you would like to pitch to a brand anywhere in the world, pitch us your idea. We have well-established processes to ensure that your ideas are properly seen and protected.

Arizona Tax Incentives For Filming

The state of Arizona does not offer a tax incentive for visiting productions. Various regions and cities in Arizona offer productions individual financial incentives.

Arizona Film Crew & Talent

Crew. Arizona has a good pool of local crew and all the standard camera, grip and lighting equipment. Anything else can be easily brought in from Los Angeles. Yuma, for instance, is only a 4 hour drive away.

Contact us if you are looking for a Phoenix, Flagstaff, Tucson or Yuma based director, DP, photographer, videographer (cameraman / camera operator), camera assistant (focus puller), sound operator, grip, gaffer, stylist, hair and makeup, PA / runner, production driver, or any other film crew in Arizona.

Talent. Most talent looks are Caucasian and Latino. Arizona has one of the largest Native American populations in the United States with the Navajo Nation being the largest group, followed by Apache, Pima, ohono O’odham, and Hopi. Movie character stereotypes include suntanned retirees, park rangers, ranchers, and Mexican families.

Arizona Film Equipment

Equipment. Standard camera, grip and lighting equipment available locally. More specialised equipment needs to be brought it.

Communications. Communication is key. Our agility and global experience allows us to customise the right communications systems for every shoot.

Web posted casting, scouting, and videoconferencing.

For clients that are unable to attend set we offer a virtual video village solution. This dedicated and secure high-resolution video streaming platform allows clients from one or multiple timezones to view setups without compromise and to participate in real-time with the team on set. Separate systems can be set up for the discrete conversations that are required to make a job run right. Working remotely with our local teams reduces your content production costs, turnaround times, carbon footprint, and risks associated with unpredictable global events.

Arizona Studios & Post Production

Arizona has a few studios to choose from.

Arizona Film-Friendly Accommodation

Please contact us for recommended film friendly hotels in Phoenix / Scottsdale, Flagstaff, Tucson, Yuma and other areas of Arizona. Phoenix hotels of note include:

Embassy Suites Phoenix Biltmore

Final Notes

Safety. Arizona is a very safe and reliable place for foreign productions to shoot. See here for up to date travel advice.

Down Time. Explore the Grand Canyon by foot or whitewater raft.

Projects. For an example of TV commercials, stills campaigns, online content, corporate videos, virtual reality 360 content, feature films, TV series and documentaries shot in Arizona, please see below:

Hire Arizona Production Support & Shooting Crew

If you are looking for a film or photographic production service company, line producer or fixer for your shoot in Arizona, please contact us.

If you are looking for a shooting crew for your shoot in Arizona, such as a director, DoP, photographer, videographer (cameraman / camera operator), camera assistant (focus puller), sound operator, grip, gaffer, stylist, hair and makeup, PA / runner, production driver, please contact us.

We are able to provide you with answers, references and bids quickly.