Video and Digital Producer’s Guide to Shooting in New York City, NY

Everything you ever wanted to know about shooting video in New York City.

New York City Go To Team

Reid Petro – Camera Operator – New York City, New York – Go To Team

Prior to arriving in a new city, every producer needs the lay of the land. This guide explores everything about New York City, NY that producers need to know.

Population: 14,404,100

Nicknames: The Empire State, The Big Apple, and The Capital of the World

Founded: 1624

Industries: Financial Services, Media, Communications and Technology

The Big Apple, The City That Never Sleeps, Gotham – whatever you like to call it, New York City has something for every taste and every traveler. From incredible art galleries and museums to some of the world’s best restaurants, New York’s many offerings are world-renowned. But to explore the real New York, it helps to have an insider’s perspective. New York is one of those cities where nothing will compare to it. It has everything a person could want down to restaurants, shopping, landscapes, history, architecture, and monuments.

It has some of the best restaurants in the country and even the world along with a list of thousands of things to do. It’s known for its architecture including the Empire State Building, the World Trade Center, the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, and the Chrysler Building. Central Park is one of the biggest parks in the country. It’s the Fashion Capital of the US and, along with its reputation for being a city where business opportunities are in abundance, New York is the city where a lot of people find their dreams.

With New York City being one of the busiest cities in the world, finding something to do is always possible. Touring the city is something very simple and quite cheap for anyone to do especially since New York has so many sights to see including parks, historical landmarks, and architecture. With the concrete jungle as your backyard, New York also has a variety of festivals, concerts, and events occurring year-round; the Tribeca Film Festival is one of the most popular events each year and brings the community together for a great cause. During the holiday season, events such as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting, and the Times Square New Year’s Eve Celebration are booming. New York Fashion Week brings people from all over the world to experience the season’s new fashion trends for the first time. The Tony Awards and its rich history allow the Theater Industry to be awarded and recognized for its brilliance on Broadway each year. Considering its popularity and history, attending a live Broadway show is almost expected when visiting New York. Other events including the Westminster Kennel Show and the US Open are seasonal events but bring in a large crowd each year to cheer on their favorite dog breed or tennis player.

New York hosts many professional sporting events especially at the famous location, Madison Square Garden. Be on the lookout for current events in New York but for now, their local teams include the New York Knicks (NBA), the New York Giants and New York Jets (NFL), the New York Yankees and New York Mets (MLB), and the New York Rangers (NHL.)

New York offers plenty of higher education through many different locations including Columbia University, NYU, Juilliard, and Fashion Institute of Technology.

Once you’ve decided to shoot in New York City there’s plenty you should know:

Where To Stay

With NYC being a popular city to visit, booking hotels can get overwhelming and expensive. Luckily, we have found some great options for hotels in great locations and for even greater prices. The DoubleTree Metro NY, the Renaissance NY Hotel 57, the Pod 51 Hotel, and the Belvedere Hotel are all star-rated hotels at a great price in New York City.

Location & Drive Times

Driving anywhere in New York will be a headache. It is known for its traffic and even worse, traffic road rage, so we suggest taking a car service such as Uber or Lyft, taking the subway/metro, and/or walking. Almost anything is walking distance, but times will differ depending on your destination.


New York has all four seasons. Some worse than others, but you will experience whatever season when you are visiting. Their coldest month January sits at a chilling 36 degrees and their hottest month July is on average 83 degrees. Be sure to prepare to clothe for whenever you visit since snow is expected during winter. Click HERE for a current 10-day forecast for New York City.

Production of Guidelines

Crews across the country have a set of guidelines by which they conduct business. And as different as each city is from another, so are those guidelines. Every producer should have a basic understanding of each city’s standards. Shoots in New York City are based on a ten hour day and the crew is on the clock at the specified crew call. Overtime at a rate of time and a half begins after ten hours. If your shoot takes the crew to a distant location, travel time can be expected. A distant location is any location outside a circle with a 30-mile radius drawn around the city where 79th Street Transverse and 5th Ave. are the center. But all of these are just guidelines; certainly, verify with your crew their specific policies.

Chamber of Commerce

If you have additional questions about New York City you can always contact the city’s Chamber of Commerce.

20 W 44th St.

New York, NY 10036


Booking the Right Crew

But even with the perfect location, the best-laid plans, and great weather, so much depends on the right crew. Booking the right crew means finding a crew that not only gets the job done, but does whatever it takes to ensure you have the best shoot. Are you conducting a series of interviews that require dramatic lighting? Are you going to be “run and gun” around the city? Is your shoot going to require any specific equipment? Finding a crew that can handle every one of your needs is just as important as lining up all of the interviews and creating your shot list.

For more information on booking your camera crew, see: “Everything you ever wanted to know about booking a video crew.”

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