Monday, September 29, 2008

Our Followup on the Governor's Council on Film and Media Town Hall

Saturday was an informative day at the Capitol Building, as filmmakers and media people from around New Mexico gathered for the Governor’s Council on Film and Media Industries Town Hall to discuss the state the industry, and to solicit input for how it should be over the next years. It is always amazing to see the variety of people who are involved in this amazing creative and economic renaissance, and to meet everyone face to face.

There were 3 main areas of discussion for the day:
1. Education/Mentoring
2. Business Opportunities
3. The Incentive Program

We fully agree that each niche of the industry must do their part to insure the growth of their sector, insulate against hard times, enhance one’s business and skills, facilitate education and training, and work with communities to keep us a welcome visitor. However, at this time, we’d like to talk about the most critical, keystone, element of the industry because it trumps all else in its immediacy and importance, and that is the incentives.

The NM Incentives are the reason for the industry in New Mexico – they are the seed that sows everything else. It is our contention, especially in these strange economic times, that we should do everything we can to maintain/enhance incentives, and continue to foster the growth of the major film and TV projects in the state. Whether one agrees with the artistic, creative, ethical, or business practices of “Hollywood” or not, the film industry translates into a lot of economic support, infrastructure, and opportunities to a great many people. This is a very rare and unique constellation of elements (economic, creative, logistical, geographical) that are working in favor of the New Mexico film professional, and the individuals and businesses that support it. It trickles down; there are now thousands of people that survive, and thrive on the industry. Plus, we're producing excellent, well received movies, and building a world-wide reputation as a leading filming destination.

We support the use of time and energy to participate in the NM Film Industry, while it is here, growing and strong. Make good money. Get good credits. Build your connections. And also dedicate time to strengthening the incentives so that we remain ahead of the industry curve.

Now, if, while we’re supporting the major motion picture aspect, we can focus on a local film industry that will sustain itself in lean, or post-Hollywood times, then it only does more to strengthen the industry from the ground up, but it also provides some market-oriented insulation. And it also allows the hundreds of people who are not working on the big pictures to have their creative and economic outlets. It’s a good idea.

We will do what we can to keep you informed about opportunities to support and enhance the incentives, including, soon, a mailing that will include all state and local representatives whom you should lobby for support. If you’re not already on our mailing list, join from here on the blog (top right corner of this page).

Through our work, we meet amazing, talented, creative, and fascinating people every day. It is the goal of to help foster the industry – whether a major production or independent or student flick - by providing an outlet for you to advertise your business or skills, offering information and resources for the filmmaker, and, most importantly, providing a place for productions to find all that they need for their work here in New Mexico.