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Foothills Park

Film / Photo Permits

Filming movies in the Portland area

Why Choose Lake Oswego for Film/Photo Locations?

The City of Lake Oswego has been the filming location for several movies, a television series, a children's video production and several commercials.  The reasons for selecting the City of Lake Oswego are varied: we have wonderful scenery, including lots of large trees, mature landscaping, and a lake; we are close to the Portland International Airport (15 miles), and the Willamette Valley, the Oregon coast and Mt. Hood, and we have a desirable location between Interstate 5 and the Willamette River.

Films and Other Media Presentations Produced in Lake Oswego

Some of the movies filmed partially in Lake Oswego include:

  • "Dead By Sunset" (1995, based on true-crime book by Ann Rule);   
  • "The Favor" (made in 1991, released in 1994 -- a romantic comedy starring   Elizabeth McGovern, Harley Jane Kozak, Bill Pullman, and Brad Pitt);  "Bandits" (Fall 2000, a Bruce Willis and Billy Bob Thornton crime drama).
  • "Extraordinary Measures " (2009, a Harrison Ford and Brandon Fraiser drama).

The television series filmed partially in Lake Oswego was "The Nowhere Man," a Disney production.

Lake Oswego has also been the site for a number of personal, commercial, and industrial photo shoots.

Do You Need to Obtain a Film/Photo Permit?

All persons or legal entities shall obtain a filming permit prior to filming motion pictures, commercials or videotaped productions within the City limits (private or public locations). This requirement shall not apply to films made by amateurs or to the filming of news events by accredited representatives of news agencies.

Streets and Rights-of-Way.  A City Film/Photo Permit is used to help address impacts to the public right-of-way, such as:

  • street is to be closed,
  • traffic re-routed,
  • flaggers are used to control the movement of traffic, or
  • equipment or personnel are placed within the public right-of-way.

(Note:  the public right-of-way extends beyond the paved or traveled surface of a roadway to the adjacent private property boundaries.)

Parks and Other City Property.  A City Film/Photo Permit and Site Use Agreement is also needed to use a city park or other city property.  The park or other city property is "used" for film purposes when:  the film set / location is within the city park or other city property; the city park or other city property is used for storage (including temporary storage); the city park or other location is used as an identifiable backdrop in a scene.  As the owner of the property, permission must be obtained before conducting any commercial activities on city property, including parks and public open space areas.

How to Apply for a City Film/Photo Permit

Production companies and photographers that need to obtain a Film/Photo Permit must submit to the Parks & Recreation  Department at least four weeks prior to the proposed date to begin - extra time required based on the circumstances listed below:

  • A completed Lake Oswego Film/Photo Permit.  In order to allow adequate time for review, notice to affected neighbors, personnel scheduling, etc., the following submission deadlines apply:
    • If the event involves the closure or restriction of other than a local, residential street or restriction or closure of a local, residential street for more than 12 hours, the application must be submitted not less than 45 days prior to the event.
    • If the event involves the closure or restriction of a local, residential street for less than 12 hours, or the use of a City park or other City facility, the application must be submitted not less than 14 days prior to the event.
  • A completed Release and Indemnity Agreement;
  • A traffic control plan, if the production involves a temporary detour of traffic or necessitates the use of flaggers to control the movement of traffic.  (All flaggers used in the control of traffic must be certified by the State of Oregon);
  • A film permit fee (See Finance / Master Fee Schedule / Administration / Miscellaneous Fees, No. 4);
  • A Site Use Agreement, and payment of any required park use fee [See Finance / Master Fee Schedule / Parks / Commercial Filming in City Parks] or facility use fee, if the filming will use a city park or other city property (contact City Parks Department or other department that runs the facility; if not known, please e-mail us and your inquiry will be directed to the appropriate department); and
  • A certificate of insurance covering:   

A certificate of insurance for general liability naming the City of Lake Oswego as primary additional insured for amount not less than $2,000,000 combined single limit for injury or death or property damages (including loss of use) in any one occurrence, and $3,000,000 general aggregate coverage. City to receive 30 days notice of cancelation or material modification. If alcohol is to be sold, liquor liability coverage is also required. (The City reserves the right to increase coverage minimum if the event presents extraordinary risk).

For more information call at 503-675-2549.