I used to think that film production is a business that not many frauds or scams are involved
If you agree with me, you will want to reconsider that.
For the last few months, we have been receiving some e-mails which didn't really look serious.
They claimed to have an interest for filming in Turkey, but instead of discussing the project and what they need, the intentions were more focused on the ways to enter Turkey on a
'film crew visa'.
Names on the e-mail addresses would mostly return no results on google search so we kept ignoring these emails until we received the one below.
It looked like any other company who would contact us, so we started sharing e-mails. We even received a professional synopsis and reference drawings for locations, so it did not look suspicious at all.
A few days later, we already had a location scouting schedule and ready to start the paperwork, but it started getting odd when the client insisted on two things;
- We want your help with paperwork for visas.
- We want to pay everything in cash after our arrival.
At this point, we finally realized that something was wrong so we digged deeper on search engines and found this!
Wow! Just like we thought, It turned out that all their efforts including fake scripts, storyboards, and schedules were a part of the plan. Sounds a bit like Argo, doesn't it?
We decided to blur out the names on the screenshots because when we did an even broader search, we realized that this is not the only company / individual trying this fraud. In fact, this became the fraudsters new method of approaching production services companies.
It's not clear if this is only done for getting a filming visa or if there are more behind it.
What we know for sure is that all film production services companies and producers should be aware of this fraud.
Please spread the word by sharing or comment if you have something to add.