Budget Films

Stock Footage

Rates and Reasons

Can you really afford to use cheap footage?

There is a proliferation of cheap stock footage available on the Internet. Most of this is material, ostensibly public domain in the United States includes no warranty with regard to use in other countries or possible 3rd party rights. We get lots of calls from desperate filmmakers who’ve cut corners with bargain footage only to discover that broadcasters and distributors insist that stock footage material is cleared for worldwide use and the licensee is fully indemnified by a reputable footage library. Also, there is an extremely false assumption that materials found on YouTube can be used freely in any project. Often we are able to match and replace footage that does not conform a distributor’s contractual requirements but sadly a number of terrific projects have been scrapped due to an over-reliance on footage from non-vetted sources or YouTube.


Budget Films has a commitment to documentary and independent projects and we try to discount license rates, particularly for projects that tickle our fancy, as much as we can.

We offer a 20% discount on all licenses for any project that is successfully funded at Kickstarter.

Members of the Clear Association of Research and Clearance Professionals and The Visual Researcher's Society of Canada are also eligible for a 20% discount on licensing.

Research and Clearance Services:

Depending on the amount of material required, we can either work on an hourly or project based rate. Call or e-mail Layne to discuss your project.

Student Films

(with school documentation)
Low res Quicktime upload: $100 per clip of ten seconds or fewer (includes upload and one year Internet or film festival)
High res Quicktime upload: $150 per clip of ten seconds or fewer (includes upload and one year Internet of film festival)
(Ask us about rates for usage on longer clips)


30 second per order minimum.

Festival only, single showing per festival: $25 per second
Festival and Internet: $35 per second


30 second per order minimum

Broadcast only, in perpetuity: $50 per second
Home entertainment only, in perpetuity: $50 per second
Theatrical only: $50 per second
All rights, all media, universal, in perpetuity: $75 per second
Please give us a buzz for a quote if you need a different configuration of rights.

Advertising-Broadcast, Internet, Trailers

Advertising often requires additional clearance and rates are evaluated on a case by case basis depending on content, region and length of run.


High res Quicktime or Apple Pro Res upload, Beta SP, Mini-DV or DV-Cam NTSC: $200 minimum per order.

HD or 2K: $300 minimum per order.
Inquire regarding other formats or PAL materials.


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