Filmmakers are turning their backs on the Northern Territory due to the difficulty of getting filming permits, movie producer and comedian Mick Molloy says.
Molloy, who has written and produced several movies including Crackerjack and BoyTown, is working on a new comedy film set around a mine in the territory
But Molloy told AAP he had been smothered with paperwork since trying to get permits to make the film in the NT, and was now looking to film it in Western Australia's Kimberley district.
"If you have a look at it at the moment there are about five films being filmed in the Kimberley and none in the territory, and I think that is pretty much because everyone recognises it is too hard," Molloy said from his hotel in Darwin.
"It is a bit ridiculous because it is just unnecessarily hard with red tape."
He said the film would have been a good way to promote the territory but with permits needed from local authorities, land councils and others, it was becoming too difficult.
"I thought it would be a great calling card for the Northern Territory," Molloy said.
"Wouldn't it be great to have these pictures going around the world where people would go 'that joint looks all right'?"
He said the movie was still being written and moving production to the Kimberley could still be avoided if permits were forthcoming but it was looking too difficult to get through all the paperwork.
Darwin-based independent filmmaker Dixi Joy Bankier said it did seem easier to get films going in WA.
Ms Bankier said the process in the NT wasn't too difficult to navigate through but could take up to three months, longer if permission was needed to go into Kakadu National Park.
Filmmakers in the NT may need permission from local shires and land councils, and can sometimes need environmental approvals, she said.
Terry Mills, the new NT chief minister, who was elected to office last month, promised during his campaign to cut down bureaucratic red tape that was smothering businesses.