Despite Writers Strike, Santa Clarita Film Office Has Record Year
Non-strike months provide more than enough filming to make the program a success.
The City of Santa Clarita announced today a record 335 permits for location filming were issued in Fiscal Year 2007-2008 (Fiscal Year runs from July 1 through June 30), representing an 8 percent increase over FY 2006-2007 when the film office issued 311 permits.
This increase is particularly significant given the writer’s strike negatively affected film production for several months in Santa Clarita, creating a situation where substantially less permits were issued for December 2007 through March 2008 when compared to the year prior. Despite this hurdle, the strength of the rest of the year helped catapult film permits numbers to another record-breaking year.
In total, location filming contributed more than $18.9 million in economic benefit to Santa Clarita and its businesses as a result of production spending.
“We are proud to be one of Southern California’s most filmed and film-friendly cities,” said City of Santa Clarita Mayor Bob Kellar. “Santa Clarita is committed to helping the film industry thrive, not only because of the economic benefits to local businesses, but also because of the high-paying and locally-based jobs it provides for thousands of our residents who work in the industry.”
Jack Kyser, chief economist with the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation, recently told an audience of entertainment industry professionals the City of Santa Clarita is one of the most business-friendly communities for moviemakers. He applauded the City’s film-friendly permitting process, location within the “30-mile zone,” and local business support for the industry.
The City of Santa Clarita continues to support a strong base of recurring productions and is currently home to five television shows, including HBO’s “Big Love,” CBS’s “NCIS” and “The Unit,” FX’s “The Riches,” and NBC’s “Knight Rider.” In addition to these shows that are based within the City and regularly film on location, several other television shows regularly use Santa Clarita’s array of locations, including “24,” “Weeds,” “CSI,” “Heroes,” and a host of cable television shows.
To help market Santa Clarita to the entertainment industry, the Film Office has increased its visibility, promoting Santa Clarita as an ideal place in which to work via newsletters, an annual film guide and online at FilmSantaClarita.com, in addition to regular outreach to the entertainment industry through film specific tradeshows, trade and regional media, and special events.
The City of Santa Clarita’s Film Office was created to help attract and retain the filming industry, including both location filming and film-related businesses. The office currently issues permits for all location filming within the city ensuring that there is a minimal impact on residents and businesses, promotes the City as an ideal place for the film industry to do businesses, and promotes the Santa Clarita Valley as a great place for location filming.
The film industry is a major economic engine of the Santa Clarita economy, providing increased revenue for City programs through sales tax revenue, and jobs for residents.