Codes of Practice / Guidelines

This section contains key guidelines and information for all people working in the New Zealand screen production industry, both domestic and international.  These are recommended standards based on industry best practice.  If you have any concerns regarding the implementation of these guidelines on your production please contact us, or the appropriate Guild or industry organisation.

Introduced in 2014, the SPADA/Equity Individual Performance Agreement (the "Agreement") is for use on New Zealand based and funded feature films and television drama productions.  This Agreement replaces the 2005 Pink Book.   SPADA is responsible for administering the Agreement to producers on a production-by-production basis

Please note, this Agreement is not applicable for use on short films

The Individual Performance Agreement is in two parts:

1.0 Key terms (Page 1-5) and the Standard Terms and Conditions (Pages 6-27)
The key terms, pages 1-5, are in Word format and should be filled in as part of the negotiation between the producer and the artist or their agent.   It is not intended that wording as provided needs to be changed, rather commercial points of negotiation recorded.  The Standard Terms and Conditions (pages 6-27) are provided in PDF format as it is not intended that these standard terms and conditions be altered. Each page should merely be initialed by the producer and the artist or agent
READ ONLY version available here; and

2.0 Back End agreement
This separate agreement is also issued under the same terms as the individual performance agreement. It is intended for use on productions with funding from the NZFC, NZ On Air or Te Mangai Paho.  It will not normally be filled in by the producer until around the time of principal photography on the production when the number of key performers is known.

It is important to note that the back-end agreement is not for all performers on the production; but key performers, please note the definition in the Agreement.  The Agreement will be provided in Word format and watermarked to the specific production and/or series (if applicable).  Other than production specific information wording does not need to be changed.  
READ ONLY version here

Issuing the Agreement / Licence Agreement
Producers are required to sign a licence agreement before the Agreement is issued.  A small licence fee, based on total production budget, is applied to cover administration costs.  [NB: The licence fee is not applicable to SPADA members or first time producers with production budgets under $250,000.]  

The fees are as follows:

(a)   Up to NZD1million: $500
(b)   Between NZD1m-NZD3million: $1,000
(c)   NZD3million and above: $1,500
       (15% gst applies to fee)    

If you would like to proceed with using the Agreement please fill out the Licence Agreement and return to the SPADA Office (  

The Code of Practice for the Engagement of Crew in the New Zealand Screen Production Industry
September 2017 Edition

Produced by the Screen Industry Guild Aotearoa New Zealand Incorporated (SIGANZ) in co-operation with SPADA and the NZ Advertising Producers Group (NZAPG), the Blue Books provides a reference document of best-practice processes for the engagement of freelance crew members in the New Zealand screen production industry.  It replaces the Guidelines for the Engagement of Crew previously published in 2004.

The Blue Book covers all forms of screen production including broadcast, factual and documentary, internet content, gaming, television commercials, television drama and feature films.

It's important to remember that the Blue Book represents industry guidelines.  Its provisions outline legal responsibilities and suggested best practices.  Production companies and crew members are free to negotiate different arrangements, within the law, if some provisions do not meet the needs of either party.  Nevertheless, the Blue Book outlines many generally accepted ways of working in a manner which is intended to provide useful, mature information in a context which explains why various processes are needed.

2017 BLUE BOOK is available HERE.


ScreenSafe supports and promotes Health and Safety in the New Zealand Screen Sector.   SPADA is part of ScreenSafe's Working Group, which is an industry-wide collaborative effort with financial support and backing from the NZFC, NZ On Air and SPADA along with other guilds, industry bodies and regional film offices. 

The Health & Safety Guidelines are for all persons and organisations that contribute to or are associated with screen production in New Zealand. This includes the organisations that supply studios, locations, materials, plant and equipment, production companies, agencies, funders, individual contractors and associations. The scope is limited to work conducted in New Zealand and includes pre-production, production and post-production. It also applies to international productions that conduct their business in New Zealand. These guidelines do not address health and safety obligations for work undertaken outside of New Zealand, however these guidelines can be used to help promote safe and healthy work practices for work undertaken in other countries.

Click here for the Guidelines and templates.

These guidelines are not a substitute for the Act, or other relevant legislation, and every person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU), officer and worker should be familiar with the provisions of the legislation and regulations relevant to their line of work. The information provided in these guidelines has been developed to complement legislative requirements for health and safety in New Zealand, primarily being the Health Safety at Work Act 2015 and its regulations. Should any sections require amendment, this will be undertaken through a formal process via the Screen Industry Guild of NZ.  


This code was developed by Film New Zealand and the Department of Conservation for the benefit of the screen production sector. It is designed to alleviate concerns about shooting on DOC land and spell out a code of good practice after extensive consultation to ensure that the exemplary record established to date by the New Zealand screen production industry was not damaged.


This voluntary Code of Practice sets out recommended standards based on industry best practice that aim to ensure the welfare of animals used in screen productions. All people working in the screen production industry, who from time to time may come into contact with animals should be familiar with this Code.

SPADA Update on Bryson Decision

SPADA, with the assistance of Minter Ellison Rudd Watts, has prepared a document on the Bryson Supreme Court decision, summarizing what the Supreme Court did and did not say, followed by a list of relevant tests that can be applied to determine the status of workers as employees or contractors.