Motion Picture and Television Development

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Apply for a Film Permit

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A permit is required for filming or related activities in DC public space. This includes all types of commercial filming and photography (documentaries, commercials, PSAs, student films, etc.)

The size of your cast and crew does not exempt you from obtaining a film permit in the District of Columbia, but it will affect the amount of the film permit fees charged. (See last page of application for our fee chart.)

Filming at the White House (Pennsylvania Avenue NW between 15th and 17th Street) can be covered by our film permit - just list "White House" on your application.

We can now also offer a 'blanket' permit for all streets in the city (under DC control), or for specific neighborhoods such as Capitol Hill, Woodley Park, Anacostia, or Petworth. Just list "blanket filming" on your locations list of your application along with your date and time range. Be advised that this option is primarily for b-roll and general establishing shots and WILL NOT COVER ANY NATIONAL PARKS, GEORGETOWN WATERFRONT PARK, MEMORIAL BRIDGE, THE REFLECTING POOL, TIDAL BASIN, ROOSEVELT MEMORIAL, THE MALL, U.S. CAPITOL, OR ANY OTHER NATIONAL MONUMENTS, OR MEMORIALS. (See National Park Service link below.)


Film permits for DC public space are issued by the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment and provide permission to occupy public space for filming and parking in the District of Columbia. Location parking for essential production vehicles is not guraranteed, but we make every effort to make it avilable. Please read the full film permit application Instructions prior to completing a film permit application. For additional information about film permits, you may contact the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment directly at (202) 727-6608 or film@dc.govwith any questions or concerns.

Film permits for National Park Service (National Mall, Washington Monument, Lincoln or Jefferson Memorials, etc.), US Capitol, or DC Department of Parks and Recreation (pools, basketball courts, playgrounds, etc.) are handled separately.Please follow the appropriate link to find permit information for the National Park Service, US Capitol Police, etc.

Volume is higher during particular times of the year, so you must submit your request to the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment, at least:

  • Three (3) full* business days prior to the first day of filming when requesting filming only; or
  • Five (5) full* business days prior to the first day of parking when also requesting parking.

*Applications received before 9 am are considered a full business day.  

Submit completed application by email (, or by fax at fax (202) 727-3246.