Birmingham-Jefferson Film Office

From Bhamwiki
Jump to: navigation, search

The Birmingham-Jefferson Film Office was a promotional organization created with the cooperation of the City of Birmingham and Jefferson County to encourage the use of the Central Alabama region as a film and television production location. The Office was created as part of the non-profit Metropolitan Development Board and was announced by Board president Tom Hamby, County Commissioners Larry Langford and Shelia Smoot, and City Councilors Carole Smitherman and Bert Miller at an April 22, 2005 press conference in the lobby of the Alabama Theatre. After the MDB's merger into the Birmingham Business Alliance, the film office moved under that organization's umbrella.

The Film Office was overseen by a Film Council made up of two appointees from the city, two from the county, one from the Birmingham Convention and Visitors Bureau, and one from the Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival. The Office's director was Mark Stricklin, a former director of the Alabama Film Office and board member of the Association of Film Commissioners International.

The role of the Birmingham-Jefferson Film Office was to assist with local productions and to entice new productions to utilize the Birmingham region. The Office maintained a digital database and gallery of potential shooting locations and provided assistance in location scouting and research. It also collected contact data for local professionals and equipment providers, and served as a liaison and clearinghouse for permit applications and economic incentives from local governments. The Office's staff also actively pursued marketing and networking opportunities to put Birmingham in the mind of film producers and directors.

From the city's standpoint, the Film Office replaced the mission of the embryonic Birmingham Film Commission which was established in 2003 as part of the city's Department of Parks and Recreation. A resolution to approve funding for the office on the January 15, 2008 Birmingham City Council agenda was delayed for five weeks so that the office could provide a list of film companies that have done work in the city and county in the previous 2-3 years. The Birmingham-Jefferson Film Office shut down with Stricklin's departure in 2012.

The office's functions were picked up again in 2017 with the establishment of Film Birmingham under the auspices of Create Birmingham with the support of the Mayor's office.

References

  • Godbey, Paul. (September 21, 2004) "Birmingham City Council moves toward funding film commission amid controversy." Reelscene Ezine. [1] - accessed April 3, 2006
  • Godbey, Paul. (April 22, 2005) "Birmingham-Jefferson County Film Office created by Metropolitan Development Board." Reelscene Ezine. [2] - accessed April 3, 2006
  • Godbey, Paul. (April 22, 2005) "Interview with Ted VonCannon, Metropolitan Development Board , and the Birmingham-Jefferson County Film Office." Reelscene Ezine.[3] - accessed April 3, 2006
  • Dugan, Kelli (September 21, 2005) "Birmingham-Jefferson Film Office names new director." Birmingham Business Journal
  • Tomberlin, Michael (July 21, 2009) "Insider: Film office under Business Alliance." The Birmingham News