The Natural History Camera Crew Collective (NHCCC) is a growing global collaboration of 140+ professional camera crew working within natural history filmmaking, spanning a range of experience, skills, and expertise, who have come together to create and support a standard set of booking terms and conditions.
These terms have been created to provide better communication, transparency and security for both freelance camera crew and production. Freelance crew are entitled to ask for their own terms and conditions, and these terms are being adopted across the industry globally by all camera job roles. We are all privileged to work within this special part of the filmmaking industry, but this should not create an environment where freelance camera crew are obliged to accept unfair contractual conditions.
When compared to other genres such as film, drama and documentary, natural history camera crew have the most specialised skill sets, yet are paid the lowest rates and face the highest financial risks. These terms reflect the commitment, risk, and investment made by freelancers which must be acknowledged by production.
Due to the specialist nature and wide ranging expertise required within natural history filmmaking, freelancers often invest in particular areas of their skill sets, equipment, and location-specific essentials in response to
production needs – this is usually unknown to the production. This investment may only be required for a scheduled shoot, so when shoots cancel, the freelancer can often be at a loss. Deposits and cancellation policies enable freelancers to make these investments which benefit the production, and creates a more inclusive and stable working environment.
It is currently normal practise within natural history filmmaking for contracts to be issued hours or days before (sometimes after) the departure date, which is unfair and does not allow freelancers appropriate time to read contracts. By presenting these terms upon booking, the production is made aware of the terms the freelancer expects within their contract, and commitment required for freelancers to make themselves exclusively available for the shoot dates in question.
For camera crew using the terms - The terms below have been created as a minimum standard that should be presented upon enquiry for work bookings, and are not to be negotiated under. By collectively asking for the same terms, we create a level playing field for us all to work from. If you are a camera person and you would like to join the Natural History Camera Crew Collective community supporting these terms, please complete both forms below.