First Steps Taken Toward An Arizona Film Office

January 30, 2014

(Photo courtesy of @FilmTucson)
Movies like this one filmed in Tucson could be soon filmed in Arizona with an official film office.

A state Senate committee has taken the first steps toward setting up an Arizona Film Office to help Hollywood producers bring feature films to the state. The legislation would set the film office up under the governor’s office, with an initial operating budget of $612,000. Sen. Carlyle Begay said producers want to use backdrops like the Grand Canyon, Sedona and Monument Valley but need help with the necessary permits.

“This is why movies like '3:10 to Yuma' were shot predominantly in New Mexico. Or, more recently, 'The Lone Ranger,' which was with a backdrop of the Western in the Southwest of the United States and Arizona, predominantly was shot in New Mexico," said Begay.

Barry Aarons, who lobbies for the Tucson Convention Bureau said a film office would provide one-stop permit shopping.  He said the lack of single-point coordination leaves producers to figure things out on their own, or take the easier road and go elsewhere.