Who needs authorization?
Any individual or organization who intends to produce content for commercial purposes must apply for authorization.
What is the distinction between "media projects" and "news"?
"Media projects" are long-term ventures, which typically involve production in multiple locations over a period of time. These include documentaries, television series, general television productions and photographic publications. The Secretariat for Communications grants the required authorization for these; firstname.lastname@example.org
"News" refers to production that is related to timely news events as well as to events which are regularly scheduled, such as celebrations in the Vatican Basilica, other Papal Basilicas, St. Peter's Square, the Wednesday general audiences, the Holy Father’s visits to Roman parishes or to other places in the city, the visits of Heads of State and Government in the Apostolic Palace and interviews that regard current news and events given immediate news coverage. Accreditation to produce news can be requested from the Press Office of the Holy See: email@example.com [Click here for more information]
How long does it take to receive authorization from the DfC?
Response time depends on the type of project and permission requested. It also varies with the time of year and the number of requests received.
All requests should be made well in advance of projected production time. Applications for major projects involving multiple departments/authorizations and requiring several production days should be submitted no less than one month in advance.
Can I apply for permission to film if I don't already have confirmation that my product will be aired?
Commitment of transmission/publication with identification of the transmitting/publishing entity must be obtained before applying. Proof of commitment should be submitted with application.
Can I apply if I don't yet have liability insurance?
Applications will be accepted before insurance has been purchased. Before production can begin, applicants must show proof of comprehensive insurance that covers injury to persons and damage to physical locations and property, especially for projects requesting access to the interior of Vatican-owned properties, such as the Vatican Museums, Library, Secret Archives or inside the Papal Basilicas, where it is possible to cause damage to people, property or art work.
I want to make a movie about the Vatican that involves actors. Can the DfC authorize this?
Approval of the filming of a movie with actors and extras or filming for advertising or for promotional purposes or tourism will not be given. This rule applies also to Vatican extraterritorial properties.
What procedure do I follow if I decide later that I want to use the footage to make DVD's or for another purpose?
Material is licensed by the DfC for a single specific media/format only. Any other use (including Internet use) must first be submitted to and approved by the DfC. Subsequent commercialization of the material (e.g. in DVD, Home Video, CD, etc) must be submitted for approval and rights renegotiated.
Can I interview Pope Francis for my project?
Interviews with the Holy Father happen only in exceptional circumstances. Requests can be submitted to:
The Press Office of the Holy See
Via della Conciliazione 54
00120 Vatican City State
Telephone: +39 06 698921
Telefax: +39 06 6868810
Can I sell my footage to a third party?
Material may not be sold to third parties. Any material produced must be used solely and exclusively for the type of production that has been authorized in advance by the DfC.
Should any dispute arise concerning the interpretation, the validity or the effect of the agreement reached or in its execution, that shall not be resolved in the spirit of mutual collaboration, it will be referred to the Court of the Vatican City State and the substantive and procedural law therein operating will be applied.
I spoke directly with the head of the location that I want to film and got a verbal confirmation. Do I still need authorization from the DfC?
Authorization for media projects can be received only from the DfC. [See application procedures]
How far in advance should I submit my application?
All requests should be made well in advance. For example, applications for major projects involving multiple departments/authorizations and requiring several production days should be submitted no less than one month in advance.
Will the DfC offer advice on where to find a theological advisor to work with for the duration of the project?
It is preferred that applicants find their own qualified advisor.
Can I apply if my script is not yet finalized?
Yes. Simply fulfil the other aspects of the application process and explain when the script can be submitted.
How much does authorization cost?
There is no cost for authorization from the DfC, although some of the individual filming locations do have a fee for use of the property. Each individual location will communicate the fees involved.