February 18, 2015 at 6:49PM
I'm producing and directing a micro budget dramatic short film in New York and am in need of a house to use as the story's location. I'm especially looking for a place with that is varied enough to conceivably serve as a couple different locations in the story.
I inquired with a location scout who said that, despite my miniscule budget, she was sure she would indeed be able secure a location for me. But I have questions as to the typical process of working with a scout.
1. She said her finders fee is 20% of the total rental amount. Is this about average?
2. To begin looking and referring locations to me she requires I pay half of the total of the targeted location fee. The other half would be due when a the location contract is signed. So, if my location budget totals $1,500 she would require $750 to even begin to search. Is that typical of reputable location scouts? What happens if I pay her half the money but she doesn't find a place suitable for the film?
3. She asked to see the screenplay for the film. I assume that's typical, but I also imagine she could also do her job without seeing a full screenplay, working with detailed descriptions of what types of places are being sought.
4. What else is important to know about working with a location scout on such a film?
Thanks in advance.