NFMLA & FLICS Panel - Filming Around the State of California
Join NewFilmmakers Los Angeles (NFMLA) and Film Liaisons in California Statewide (FLICS), a statewide professional association of Film Commissions and Offices in California that are dedicated to promoting filming throughout California and assisting productions with locations, permits, resources, and local knowledge discussion on best practices, as we discuss the current state of filming On Location in various jurisdictions throughout CA.
- Moderator: Eve Honthaner – Deputy Director, California Film Commission
Eve has been the Deputy Director of the California Film Commission since 2013. Before that, the primary focus of her career was production, as she worked on features and television, in various staff positions and every freelance capacity from PA to line producer. She was associated with companies such as DreamWorks and Legendary Pictures and worked on films such as Titanic, Just Married and Tropic Thunder.
Since 1999, Eve has been teaching a six-week summer course she created for USC’s School of Cinematic Arts entitled Breaking Into The Film Industry. Through this class, she found a passion for teaching students the practical aspects of the business and giving them the tools they need to start and grow their careers.
She is the author of The Complete Film Production Handbook (now in its fourth edition). Used by both industry professionals and students, it provides a step-by-step guide to setting up and running a production. Her second book, HOLLYWOOD DRIVE is based on her USC summer course and was written for newcomers to the biz as well as for those already working in the industry who want to move their careers to the next level.
As Deputy Director, Eve provides production assistance; works closely with the CFC’s state partners (Caltrans, State Parks, CalFIRE, etc.); reviews model film ordinances, regulatory matters and legislation affecting the entertainment industry; encourages film-friendly practices statewide; works with a network of more than 40 regional film commissioners; coordinates the annual Film in California Conference and promotes production and production jobs throughout the state.
She founded and ran the Los Angeles-based non-profit organization Film Industry Network (2000-2008), is a member of the Producers Guild of America and is on the Advisory Board of NewFilmmakers Los Angeles.
- Panelist: Tasha Day – Manager of Special Events and Filming, City of Long Beach
Tasha Day is the President of FLICS and Manager, Special Events and Filming, City of Long Beach.
- Panelist: Susannah Robbins – Executive Director, San Francisco Film Commission
Susannah Greason Robbins became Executive Director of the San Francisco Film Commission in September 2010. Since then, production in San Francisco has increased 61%. Ms. Robbins worked previously in various areas of filming, as an assistant producer at Saatchi & Saatchi DFS Compton, NY, associate producer and researcher for documentaries on The American Masters Series, and as a location scout and location manager of many feature films in the Bay Area in the 90s. She also ran a successful portrait photography business which she left to come back to the film world in 2010. Robbins is combining her entrepreneurial background with her many years of production experience to find new ways to bring more filming to San Francisco.
- Panelist: Sabrina Jurisich – Film Commissioner, Film Shasta
Filming has a long history in Shasta County. With the abundant natural resources, ideal weather, experienced local cast and crew base, and the community’s warm welcome for productions, Shasta County continues to grow as an ideal destination for filmmakers.
Sabrina Jurisich has been the film commissioner for Film Shasta since January of 2017. Film Shasta provides free pre-scouts, permit information, local production support services, onsite monitoring, and the latest information about tax incentives for filmmakers. In addition to adding over 550 easily searchable film friendly locations, local cast and crew, and other resources to the Film Shasta site, she also launched a local incentive program to help inbound productions that film in Shasta County. Her commitment to providing high level service has led to exponential increase year over year for production.
Her skill set has been recognized on the state level as well. Barely a year into her position, she was elected onto the FLICS (Film Liaisons in California Statewide) executive board as Secretary, only to advance to Vice President the following year, where she continues to serve. Sabrina serves as the Co-Chair for the California On Locations Awards show which recognizes the top location professionals who film in California. She also earned a rare accolade as a “Certified Film Commissioner” through an intense training program through AFCI (Association of Film Commissioners International), a certification fewer than 10% of the film commissioners in the world have earned.
The drive she has is motivated by the desire to help the community where she lives thrive and to support filmmakers in achieving their vision.
- Panelist: Brandy Shimabukuro, Film Liaison, San Diego
Upon being appointed Filming Program Manager in late 2015, Brandy was tasked with re-establishing the San Diego Film Office following the dissolution of the San Diego Film Commission in 2013. From launching technological solutions such as an online directory for film-friendly locations and production resources and an e-permitting system, to providing concierge services to productions filming in San Diego, Brandy’s role was to be an advocate for the local film industry and a liaison for film crews, City departments, and other agencies. In addition to providing the core services of a traditional film commission, Brandy launched an international marketing campaign to re-introduce San Diego to the film industry. These efforts attracted increasingly more complex and high-profile film and TV productions, resulting in a 40% increase in permitted film dates on City public property alone in 2018. Some highlights from Brandy’s time spearheading the San Diego Film Office include facilitating production for the eagerly-anticipated sequel to “Top Gun,” working alongside studios and networks like Paramount Pictures, VICE, E! Network, Comedy Central, HBO, and National Geographic, and earning San Diego’s ranking in MovieMaker Magazine’s Big Cities: The Best Places to Live and Work as a Moviemaker for two years.
- Panelist: Paul Audley – President, FilmLA
As the President of FilmLA since 2008, Paul Audley, helps to unite communities, filmmakers and government entities to streamline the filmmaking process in the Greater Los Angeles region.
In his time with FilmLA, Paul has negotiated new long-term contracts from client municipalities and school districts, initiated two public education campaigns, “Film Works” and “LA Loves Film”; and has overseen improvements in the organization’s online permit system. Paul is recognized for raising the public image and reputation of FilmLA, and for greatly improving the internal management of the company. Paul is the third, and longest tenured, president of the organization since its establishment in 1995.
Paul joined the organization after extensive work with community-based non-profit organizations and in local government and community relations. Having served as mayor of Fairfield, Connecticut, the chief of staff and counsel to Connecticut congressman, Christopher Shays, and later Connecticut’s deputy secretary of state, Paul is notably well-versed in corporate management, organization, restructuring, public policy and relations, as well as community development.
Paul is also known for his work with arts, education and nonprofit organizations having served on the boards of the Connecticut Zoological Society, two scholarship organizations, a municipal arts council (founder), a support organization for high school performing arts (founding member), the Regional Youth/Adult Substance Abuse Project, Fairfield County Children’s Choir (founding president), a children’s museum, Creative Leaps International (a performing arts education group), Regional Economic Development Commission (chair), Metropolitan Planning Organization for Greater Bridgeport, Connecticut Conference of Municipalities, Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Open Space, National League of Cities and the United States Conference of Mayors.
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