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Archive for October, 2011|Monthly archive page

Stardust, Sunlight Jr. and Jobs, Jobs, Jobs: Are You Listening Governor Rick?

In Uncategorized on October 28, 2011 at 4:07 pm

              

                A few cheers went up across the state and particularly in the Tampa Bay area today when yet another big-name film production announced it would be shooting in Clearwater in the coming months. Writer-director Laurie Collyer (Sherrybaby) will begin four weeks of filming Sunlight Jr* starring two soon to be revealed Oscar-nominated actors**. On the heals of  Dolphin Tale and Magic Mike starring Matthew McConaughey and Channing Tatum, the area is certainly on a roll.

               Florida is one of many states with a financial incentive package created to attract film and television production to the Sunshine State. Besides the stardust excitement a big-time theatrical release will generate locally and the international publicity that will necessarily flow from a successful film release, there is a far more basic incentive for the incentive, so to speak.

               Jobs.

               Really good jobs, in fact. Clean, recurring high-paying jobs. “It’s jobs, and it’s publicity,” Jennifer Parramore said in today’s St. Petersburg Times story here. “The kinds of jobs that are created with a movie are highly skilled jobs, and generally well-paid… When you have a film come in you’re both hiring local people, as well as renting hotel rooms for people you have to bring in; heads and beds, meaning the dollars spent for everybody who’s here every day,” she said.

               So, what’s not to like? Pass a bill that reasonably provides the goodies producers are looking for, make it competitive with other state’s incentives and go get the films, right?

               Well, we have a film incentive. It’s a good one but it could be better, much better. When we rarely go a day without some news event related to Governor Rick’s efforts on job creation, the Legislature must take a more aggressive stance and pass a bill offering incentives that film producers simply can’t refuse.

               Are you listening Governor Rick? If so, how about nudging your pals in in the House and Senate in the right direction. They shouldn’t need much convincing.

               All the best.

               Bill Yanger

               *Title corrected 11/1/11.

                **Now known to be Naomi Watts and Matt Dillon