April 17, 2013
Marcel Vercoutere, age 87, of Burbank, passed away peacefully on Saturday, April 13 at his home, surrounded by family. He is survived by his lovely wife of 59 years Carolyn, his children Charlotte, Barbara, Jon and Dan as well as grandchildren and great-grandchildren. A veteran of World War II serving in the U.S. Navy, Marcel also had a long and distinguished career in his 35 years in the motion picture industry, as an innovative special-effects artist with several critically acclaimed films and television series to his credit (a longtime member of IATSE local 44)
February 13, 2013
Assemblyman Mike Gatto -- whose district includes the studio-heavy cities of Burbank, Glendale and part of Hollywood -- has been appointed to the California Film Commission. The commission handles permitting for filming on state property, and supports in-state film production through tax credits and other assistance - an important role given the recent years long trend of film shoots moving out of state to take advantage of lower costs. In a statement Tuesday, Gatto said he was proud to have been appointed to the commission given the fact that he represents “many of the studios, executives, creative and technical staff and talent that make up one of California's most critical industries.” Gatto, appointed Assembly Speaker John Perez, joins 21 other members on the commission.
January 2, 2013
Griffith Park, Point Dume, the 6th Street Bridge near downtown L.A. and a former community hospital in Boyle Heights reputed to be haunted ranked among the most popular film locations in 2012, according to a new survey. Eight of the top 10 sites for shoots of movies, TV shows, commercials and music videos on city and county streets are publicly owned, the annual survey conducted for the Los Angeles Times by FilmL.A. Inc. found. "We continue to see a considerable amount of filming that happens on government-owned properties or facilities, from beaches and parks, to public schools and libraries," said Phil Sokoloski, spokesman for FilmL.A., which handles film permits.
November 16, 2012
The film and television industry in Los Angeles County has lost more than 16,000 jobs since 2004, mostly due to work migrating out of state, a new report revealed. Last year, the entertainment business generated 102,100 jobs in the county, down 14% from its peak of 118,200 jobs in 2004, according to a study released Friday by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. During the same period, L.A.'s share of overall jobs in the motion picture and video category fell to 51% from 60%. (The figures exclude employment in the music and post-production industries.)
June 25, 2012
Last year's "Puss in Boots" was made on the lush 13-acre DreamWorks Animation campus in Glendale by 300 people working for four years at a cost of $130 million. Its knockoff was made on the second floor of an office building just two miles away - by 12 people, in six months, for less than $1 million. The DreamWorks version, which starred the voices of Antonio Banderas and Salma Hayek , was a box-office smash. The other, produced by tiny Renegade Animation, went direct to DVD . The animated knockoff is what's known in the film industry as a "drafting opportunity.
May 16, 2012
Amid mounting evidence that rival states are chipping away at California's movie and TV production business, a coalition of entertainment unions and film industry officials is renewing a push to provide long-term funding for California's popular film tax credit program. But the effort faces an uphill challenge in Sacramento, where lawmakers and Gov. Jerry Brown are wrestling with a wider-than expected $16-billion budget deficit. California currently sets aside $100 million annually for dozens of projects applying for credits that cover 20% to 25% of qualified production expenses.
February 25, 2012
A bill was introduced in the state Assembly Thursday to extend by five more years the film and television tax credit program, which proponents say has created more than 20,000 jobs and generated more than $200 million in tax revenues. The bill, AB 2026, was introduced by Assemblyman Felipe Fuentes and co-sponsored by several lawmakers, including Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Silver Lake). Fuentes introduced a bill last year that extended the program, enacted in 2009, an extra year.
January 4, 2012
Technicolor Inc. plans to lay off 50 employees at its relatively new Flower Street facility by Jan. 14, according to a recent state filing. Plans for the layoffs, filed with the California Employment Development Department, affect the 40,000-square-foot lab in the San Fernando Road corridor where the company moved roughly 100 film-processing jobs last summer. Technicolor transferred the jobs to Glendale after it downsized and shuttered its North Hollywood facility. Last month, Technicolor released an update of its 2011 financial performance and objectives for 2012, in which the company said it was “considering a number of cost-reduction action plans.” Last January, Technicolor officials said the move to Glendale was a natural choice because of the city's push for its San Fernando Road Creative Corridor and because the facility would be close to DreamWorks Animation and the Walt Disney Co.'s Creative Campus.
August 20, 2011
The Dominican Republic has moved its California consulate to Glendale to be closer to movie studios and maybe get a bigger slice of the film-industry pie. It's also created a film commission and tax incentives to attract production companies. The consulate had a grand-opening celebration Saturday with executives from Disney, NBC Universal, Legendary Films and Cartoon Network on the guest list, said Ron Lizardo, vice-consul. Rafael Alburquerque, vice president of the Dominican Republic, also attended.