FILMING IN MALAYSIA
All foreign film producers planning to shoot in Malaysia should first contact the "Film in Malaysia Office" (FIMO) in FINAS for information on filming procedures.
All foreign film producers need to apply to PUSPAL, "The Central Agency Committee for Application for Filming and Foreign Artists Presentations" under the Aegis of the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia Malaysia, to obtain approval before filming in Malaysia. Foreign film producers must appoint a production services company registered with FINAS to facilitate filming application procedures in Malaysia and approval from PUSPAL. Alternatively, producers can contact FIMO for advise and guidance to apply for PUSPAL filming approval.
Upon approval for Filming in Malaysia from PUSPAL, producers can then apply to FIMO (FINAS) for the 30% FILM IN MALAYSIA INCENTIVE.
Rules and Regulations
Activities in the local film business require government licensing and the products subject to censorship before public release. A foreign production company wishing to film in Malaysia also requires a permit and are subjected to government rules and regulations. To facilitate this, the Central Agency for Application of Filming and Performance by Foreign Artistes (PUSPAL), under the aeges of the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia (its Malay abbreviation, KKMM) was set-up. PUSPAL’s main function is to coordinate and consider all applications for filming and performance by foreign artistes and simplify the procedures. Information about these matters are available online at http://epuspal.kkmm.gov.my/.
A foreign production company must first appoint a licensed local sponsor (a Production Service Company) registered with FINAS to handle the application procedure in Malaysia on its behalf. A comprehensive list is provided at “Local Sponsors for Foreign Film Production In Malaysia” (link here)
- The sponsor’s scope of responsibilities includes:
- iPreparing a letter of undertaking and ensuring that the foreign company abides by the terms and regulations set in the JK-PUSPAL’s (PUSPAL-COMMITTEE) approval letter;
- Obtaining a professional visit pass for artistes and crew members (referred to by its Malay acronym, PLIK) before filming begins;
- Facilitating production activities;
- Ensuring that filming does not take place in security or prohibited areas; and
- Being present during all filming and production sessions.
A form for this application known as the KKMM/PUSPAL form can be obtained from the Cultural Policy Division, Ministry of Communications and Multimedia Malaysia OR downloaded from the KKMM website at (http://www.kkmm.gov.my). An application must be submitted with this completed form and must be accompanied with the following documents:
- Immigration form IM.12
- Performa Form B (LHDN or Inland Revenue)
- Form No. 1 Royal Malaysian Custom Department (if filming equipment is brought in)
- Script/story board/synopsis for each segment/blueprint/treatment
The documents must be submitted at least 30 days before filming begins, to:
Central Agency Committee for Application of Filming And Performance by Foreign Artistes (JK-PUSPAL),
Policy Division Ministry of Communications and Multimedia Malaysia,
Aras 24, Lot 4G9, Persiaran Perdana, Presint 4, Pusat Pentadbiran Kerajaan Persekutuan, 62100 Putrajaya.
Tel: (+603) 89115356
Fax: (+603) 89115360
For filming in Sabah and Sarawak (Borneo) involving local sponsors based in these states, an application is submitted to JK-PUSPAL in Putrajaya with a copy of the application also submitted to the Sabah or Sarawak state government at one of the following addresses:
Domestic Affairs and Research Sabah Chief Minister’s Department,
4th Floor, Wisma Innoprise, Teluk Likas,
88817 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia.
Tel: (+608) 832 8000
Fax: (+608) 832 8038
Sarawak State Government Secretary
Chief Minister’s Department,
(General Administration Unit and Public Affairs Unit),
8th Floor, Wisma Bapa Malaysia,
93502 Petra Jaya, Sarawak, Malaysia.
Tel: (+60) 824 41957
Fax: (+608) 244 4321
Should the shooting location, date or time becomes unsuitable for reasons such as public safety or cultural sensitivity, then the filming must be rescheduled or postponed. The postponement period allowed is one (1) month. Should it exceed this period a new application must be made to PUSPAL.
Cultural Sensitivity Declaration
Applicants must include a declaration of adherence and compliance to Malaysian cultural practices. Actions that are deemed a gross infringement of said cultural practices are subjected to review and might affect the award of the provisional certificate.
Should actions that are deemed a gross infringement of cultural practices occur and/or during production and/or postproduction, the provisional certificate can be revoked and the final certificate will not be issued.