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UK Media Protocols


November 2015 edition

Film Distributors’ Association (FDA) has prepared the following set of five generic protocols for media and other parties attending film previews in the UK. They have been updated most recently following requests from journalists and distributors for greater clarification on key issues as they evolve.

1). Standard UK embargo policy for journalists and other media review film releases.
2). Admission and security procedures for journalists and others attending previews.
3). Film premieres code of conduct for media covering the events.
4). Media screening procedures for all media, distributors and publicists.
5). Media screening code of conduct for everyone attending media screenings.

Overall purpose: These protocols are intended constructively to help journalists cover the full range of theatrical releases in a timely, professional manner and to avoid misunderstandings. Given the sheer volume of new releases – often 12-14 per week in the UK – a system of basic procedures and benchmarks is self-evidently essential. Please accept, support and co-operate with the protocols in the best interests of all parties.

General conditions applying across all five protocols

  • The Standard UK Embargo applies (see protocol No. 1 overleaf) unless otherwise specified by the UK film distributor;
  • Journalists are expected to attend screenings specially arranged and designated for their professional sector
  • Films seen for review purposes should be watched on a cinema screen wherever possible as they were intended to be experienced; screeners or online links (where available) should be used rarely and only as a last resort.
  • People invited or accredited to attend any preview screening are responsible for any guests or colleagues they may be permitted to bring along.
  • Anyone attending a screening is expected to comply with the Screening Code of Conduct (protocol No. 5).