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Join us in Olympia for Signing Ceremony

July 5th, 2017 Posted by blog, get involved 0 comments on “Join us in Olympia for Signing Ceremony”

Governor Inslee to Sign Bill on Friday, July 7th

The bill to renew the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program (which passed the House and Senate as part of a tax preference package on Friday, June 30th) will be signed into law by Governor Jay Inslee on Friday, July 7th at 1:30 pm. The bill maintains the program at its current level and renews the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program for 10 years (until July 1, 2027).

The bill to renew the program would never have passed if it was not for the unwavering support of creative professionals across the state. Please consider joining us on Friday, July 7th for the bill signing ceremony so that we can celebrate our collective success!

If you are interested in attending, please email Washington Filmworks Executive Director Amy Lillard (Amy@WashingtonFilmworks.org) and let her know you plan to attend. Once we receive your RSVP, we will send out detailed information about where to be and when.

Please consider joining us for this momentous occasion. We would love to see you there!

The Keep Film in WA Team

Final Negotiations Underway—Contact Your Legislators NOW

June 28th, 2017 Posted by blog, get involved 0 comments on “Final Negotiations Underway—Contact Your Legislators NOW”

It’s down to the wire in Olympia, and word on the street is that legislators will have an operating budget signed, sealed and delivered by THIS FRIDAY. Now is the time that programs like the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program get considered.

With the clock ticking, we have one last opportunity to remind legislators that the film incentive and state film office will go away if this program is not included in the final budget. Your voice and your stories can help push the Film Bill across the finish line.

Write, call and email your elected officials NOW—there’s no time to waste!

The 30-Day Special Session Has Begun

April 24th, 2017 Posted by blog, get informed, get involved 0 comments on “The 30-Day Special Session Has Begun”

On Friday, Governor Inslee announced what seemed to be inevitable – a special 30-day legislative session to continue the negotiations of the 2-year operating budget for the State of Washington (which officially opened today at 10am).

The end of regular session does not mean the end of the film bill. Our legislation is considered Necessary to the Implementation of the Budget (NTIB) and thus remains on the negotiating table and very much in play during the entirety of this special session.

The period of this special session is absolutely critical for the Keep Film in WA campaign, and during the coming weeks, the film professionals of Washington State must make sure their voices, stories, and advocacy for the film bill continue to be heard in Olympia.


Call to Action:

Please take this opportunity to write, email, call, (or even tweet at!) your legislators and ask them to ensure that the final budget includes an extension of the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program.

If you’ve spoken with your legislators in the past, don’t feel shy about reaching out again to touch base and keep the dialogue alive. We have a deeply dedicated, informed, and involved film community here in Washington, but elected officials in Olympia need to hear from you to make it count.

Join Us in Seattle on Thursday!

April 19th, 2017 Posted by blog, get informed, get involved 0 comments on “Join Us in Seattle on Thursday!”

The current legislative session in Olympia is ending on April 23, so we thought it was a good time to update the community on the current status of the film bill—decidedly not dead—and raise a glass to the inevitable start of the 30 day special legislative session!

If that’s all already starting to sound too dry and wonky for you, don’t worry! We’ll break it all down and explain exactly what this means in practical terms for the “Keep Film in WA” campaign. 

There’s still a lot we can all do to help this bill get passed, so please join us on Thursday and find out how you can get involved! For those film fans not in Seattle, stay tuned to the Keep Film in WA blog for breaking news about events in Olympia.  


Seattle – Thursday, 4/20/17
Washington Filmworks Legislative Update

Join us as we toast the end of the end of regular legislative session (April 23) and celebrate the launch of the inevitable 30-day special session! Amy Lillard will give an update on our progress in Olympia and give our Seattle-based advocates a roadmap of how to get involved.

5 pm – 7 pm – Saint John’s Bar & Eatery
719 E Pike St, Seattle, WA 98122

Entertain, Engage, Educate!

April 17th, 2017 Posted by blog, get informed, get involved 0 comments on “Entertain, Engage, Educate!”

You don’t have to be following the news that closely to have heard that funding education is a big issue for our state this year. What may not be as obvious is the instrumental role our state’s creative community plays in the classroom. Interactive content, much of which is developed by Washington’s creative professionals, is an indispensable staple of today’s curriculum. Educators draw on this material to enhance student engagement, inspiring children and effecting quantifiable results in performance. 

A renewal of the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program does not just provide support for the film industry, it also ensures that a broad-based creative talent pool can take root in our state, and continue to develop content and technology with far-reaching applications, one of which is providing educational content that can reach every child across the state. 

Thanks again to the students and faculty of the Seattle Film Institute for their hard work on creating this public service announcement (PSA) for the “Keep Film in WA” campaign. It’s part of a series that they’ve produced for the campaign—if you missed last week’s video, Free Billy, check it out right here


Call to Action:
 
Share this PSA with your legislators and ask them to renew the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program and maintain a vibrant local creative industry.  Remind them that the film bill has effects that extend far beyond the silver screen, that this program creates a foundation on which a statewide creative community can build and grow. 

Introducing: Free Billy!

April 13th, 2017 Posted by blog, get informed, get involved 0 comments on “Introducing: Free Billy!”

 

So does Billy ever come to the floor for a vote? Does he get passed and become a law?

Well, we don’t know yet. But while we wait for this cliffhanger to be over, enjoy Free Billy.

This delightful Public Service Announcement (PSA) is the first in a series produced by the Seattle Film Institute (SFI). Huge thanks to the students and faculty of SFI for bringing a much-needed dose of levity to the tense (and, yes, sometimes a little dry) proceedings in Olympia. A special thank you to SAG-AFTRA, as well, for their support in the production of this PSA.

Free Billy profiles the plight our real life Billy—HB 1527 in The House and SB 5502 in The Senate—which both remain in their respective finance committees. It has never been more important for us to make the case for this bill. Without its passage, the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program and the state film office will expire on June 30. As the regular legislative session draws to a close, the future of film in Washington State hangs in the balance. 


Call to Action:
 
Share this video with your friends on social media, especially with those whose lives and livelihoods are affected by this legislation.

And please send Free Billy to your elected officials and ask them to free the film bill—HB 1527 and SB 5502—from committee and make sure it is part of the final budget. Beyond being a great showcase of in-state talent, the PSA also reminds audiences about some important things about the production incentive program, reminding legislators that:

• For every $1 spent by the film incentive program, approved productions generated an estimated $10 of economic activity in the statewide economy.

• Washington State’s film incentive is smart – and designed so that no money gets paid out of the program until after the jobs are created for local workers and after production has spent money with local businesses.

• And approved productions have spent money in every legislative district!

Keep an eye out for more PSAs from our partners at the Seattle Film Institute, which we’ll be releasing here and across social media in the coming weeks.

Keep Zombies in WA!

April 5th, 2017 Posted by blog, get informed, get involved 0 comments on “Keep Zombies in WA!”

Washington Filmworks recently announced that Z Nation will return to shoot Season 4 here in Washington, and that is great news for the state’s film community and its economy. 

Securing an episodic series like Z Nation has always been a priority for Washington Filmworks. The presence of a such a production in our state encourages investment in infrastructure and provides long-term, sustainable work for Washington film industry professionals. 

The map below shows how this series has reached communities across the state. Each pinpoint represents a shooting location, a business where Z Nation production spending took place, or the hometown of a cast and or crew member from the show. 

 

CALL TO ACTION:

The infographic below is stacked with information about the real-world impact that Z Nation has had on our state, ranging from testimonials of small business owners to hard data on production spending. It’s an effective illustration of the widespread positive economic impact that film and television production has in cities and towns across the state. Share this infographic on social media, with the film community, film supporters, and especially with those of your friends who can only absorb data after its been adequately girded by zombies.

And most importantly, please take a few minutes and share this infographic with your legislators and ask them to support the renewal of the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program, set to expire on June 30 of this year. Remind them that it is because of this program that Z Nation has been able to keep production spending flowing into a variety of Washington businesses and communities across the state. 

Join Us in Bellingham, Spokane, or Seattle!

April 5th, 2017 Posted by blog, get informed, get involved 0 comments on “Join Us in Bellingham, Spokane, or Seattle!”

Washington Filmworks Executive Director Amy Lillard is hitting the road next week to participate in a handful of community events around the state. Come mix and mingle and learn how you can get involved with the campaign to Keep Film in WA.


Bellingham – Tuesday, 4/11/17
Virtual Reality Panel & Mixer 
Hosted by Bellingham Film and 
Cascadia International Women’s Festival

Amy Lillard moderates a conversation with Mischa Jakupcak of Mechanical Dreams, Bellingham filmmaker Avielle Heath, and Sandy Cioffi of Fearless 360° about an ascendant storytelling medium of our time: virtual reality. There will be demos, so you can experience some of the VR work that has been created already.

6pm – 9pm – Pickford Film Center
1318 Bay St, Bellingham, WA 98225

Spokane – Thursday, 4/13/17  
2017 Get Involved Open Meeting
Hosted by Spokane Film Project

Celebrating the return of Z Nation to Washington for its fourth season is at the top of the ticket tonight, but there will be plenty of time for Spokane Film Project to give a general preview of their plans for 2017 and for Amy Lillard to update attendees on the current status of the bill. 

6pm – 8pm – Hamilton Studio
1427 W Dean Ave, Spokane, WA 99201

Seattle – Thursday, 4/20/17
Washington Filmworks Legislative Update

Join us as we toast the end of the end of regular legislative session (April 23) and celebrate the launch of the inevitable 30-day special session! Amy Lillard will give an update on our progress in Olympia and give our Seattle-based advocates a roadmap of how to get involved. 

5 pm – 7 pm – Saint John’s Bar & Eatery
719 E Pike St, Seattle, WA 98122

Izzy the Camel Explains the Film Incentive

March 16th, 2017 Posted by blog, get involved 0 comments on “Izzy the Camel Explains the Film Incentive”

 

Thanks to our friends at the Spokane Film Project for marshaling their talents and creativity to create this short public service announcement on behalf of the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program. Besides reminding us all about that delightful in-state camel, the video also tells a side of the story that people need to hear: like where all that production money goes (Spoiler Alert: It gets spent by film crews on everything from food to gas to location rentals, benefiting local economies, and, through taxes, it actually reenters the general fund). 

A common misconception among those unfamiliar with Washington State’s film incentive program is that this spending benefits a narrow subsection of the economy. That couldn’t be further from the truth. In reality, only 5% of direct spend on a production is with businesses that are unique to film. Film shoots have a diverse array of needs, and the entire economy stands to gain from the presence of an active film production in their community.


CALL TO ACTION:

 

Everyone: Share this video with your colleagues. Everyone needs more Izzy the Camel in their life. 

Film production crew members: Share this video with your elected officials and tell them where you spend money while woking on a film set.

Let’s remind legislators of all the ways that production dollars enter the local economy and benefit the general fund through taxes.

  • Be specific with the details of your your job and the type of spending you regularly do in the course of your work on set. 
  • Highlight the spending which might not be apparent to the public. People know money is spent on camera and equipment rental, but do they realize how much is spent on food, gas, lodging? 

Ask your legislators to support the legislation—HB 1527 in The House and SB 5502 in The Senate—to extend the sunset date and increase the funding for the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program during this legislative session.

Didn’t RSVP for Film Day? Show up Anyway!

March 10th, 2017 Posted by blog, get involved 0 comments on “Didn’t RSVP for Film Day? Show up Anyway!”

 

There are just a couple of days before hundreds of creative professionals arrive at the state Capitol to meet with their state Senator and Representatives and deliver a unified message: “Keep Film in WA!”

This year’s Film Day is the most important ever. Unless we succeed in lobbying legislators to renew the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program during the 2017 legislative session, the program will end on June 30, jeopardizing the livelihoods of countless in the state. We cannot allow that to happen!

The event will include a virtual and augmented reality demo as well a SIFF-curated screening of short films made by Washington State filmmakers, but the main event is lobbying legislators to Keep Film in WA. Don’t worry if it’s your first time. We’ll be pairing up newbies with veterans as well as running a crash course on how to be the perfect film advocate.

Whether you had a chance to RSVP or not, we’d love to see you in Olympia on Monday! Just swing by the registration station on your way in, and we’ll take care of the rest. And don’t forget that Daylight Savings Time begins this Sunday morning! 


Film Day Details:
Monday, March 13, 2017
Registration Opens at 9:00 am
Advocacy Training and Tips at 10:00 am
Meetings from 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
 
Where:
Legislative Building
Columbia Room
416 14th Ave. SE
Olympia, WA 98509

Questions? Concerns? Please don’t hesitate to email info@keepfilminwa.com
Thank you for all your support so far—we’re almost there! 
Let’s continue the effort to KEEP FILM IN WA!