Production Survey: A Snapshot of 2014

Feature films, television series, commercial projects and more dominated the production landscape in 2014, but what exactly does that mean for the folks in the local industry? We surveyed a few Northwest production professionals to find out more.

 

Kelly vanderlindaKelly Vander Linda
KVL Editorial
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes. Being both an editorial boutique and independent editor is working well.

What projects did you work on?
Experienced a good increase in work. Especially with commercial projects. Some credits: Washington’s Lottery via We Are Royale/Cole & Weber, Group Health via DNA, T-Mobile via Publicis, UW via Hornall Anderson, MultiCare via Hydrogen, JMI via Straightface/Laughlin Constable, Golden1 via DNA. Booked or on hold through January with more.

What could have made your year better?
The late spring into summer period was slow. That is not a complaint.

Tanya Tiffany
Tiffany Talent
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was a highly successful year for Tiffany Talent Agency. We have experienced double-digit percentage growth in bookings for the fourth year in a row, by both number of jobs booked and total dollars paid to our talent, while not significantly increasing the size of our talent roster over the past five years. We have also added a new full time agent to our team to handle the increased volume of business.

What could have made your year better?
We believe the best thing that could happen to the Washington film industry would be to see the cap raised on the film incentive. With our 2014 film incentive used up by May of this year, there are many productions that would have shot in Washington, but moved on due to lack of any available incentive. We feel confident that if the film incentive cap was raised, there would be a lot more business pouring in for all of us.

Cody Hurd - Glazer's CameraCody Hurd
Glazer’s Camera
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
This year has seen exciting key product introductions in the photo and video industry. We are seeing photographers diversify their portfolios and general consumers taking more video content than ever before.
We have seen the shift to 4K this year, brought to fruition by camera releases like Panasonic GH4, Sony A7s, and the Black Magic Cinema camera. With the momentum of Black Magic, customers are incorporating more Video RAW files into their workflow. Drone sales are also on the rise, which continues to push creative options for our industry.

What could have made your year better?
Being in South Lake Union has its benefits, although the high number of constructions projects—including our own—can make it congested in our neighborhood. We are on the path to building our new store, where our old store once stood, which will house all of our departments and ample underground parking.

Cast Iron StudiosEryn Goodman, Lana Veenker & Ranielle Gray
Cast Iron Studios
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was hands down the best year in our 15-year history, thanks to the incentive increase that allowed additional projects to shoot in Oregon, and the rebounding economy that brought back some healthy commercial gigs. Really couldn’t ask for anything more than a busy year, a cracking team, great projects, and wonderful clients. Let’s continue making magic!

Gary KoutGary Kout
Southern Oregon Film and Media
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
By any measure, 2014 was an incredible year for Southern Oregon Film and Media (SOFaM) and for production in Southern Oregon.

Why?
We kicked off the year with Ashland being named the #2 Top Town to Live and Work as a MovieMaker by MovieMaker Magazine. Southern Oregon appeared on big screens in not one, not even two, but three theatrical films that were released nationally: Redwood Highway, Night Moves and Wild. And next year, it will be seen in Brother in Laws and Black Road, two more films made entirely in Southern Oregon. It appeared on the small screen as well, most recently on an episode of Restaurant: Impossible and as the backdrop for a Budweiser commercial. Local production was up, including spots, corporate videos, long and short narratives, and more. Our organization received new funding, hired its first paid staff member, and membership in the organization is at an all-time high!

What could have made your year better?
There’s always something that could be better—more productions, more members, more awards—but it just gives us something to strive for in 2015!

Mondo Catering-215Sarah Baltazar
Mundo Catering
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was a very successful year for Mundo Catering. We appreciate receiving such a warm welcome from the local film industry.

What projects did you work on?
We provided onsite and drop off catering for several productions, including Grimm, Portlandia, West of 7th and Runestone. We also catered for several commercials, including companies like Nike, Hyundai, Harley Davidson, Adidas and Dr. Pepper. We have made some amazing contacts, and really appreciate all the repeat clients.

What could have made your year better?
There are always challenges facing small businesses, especially when the business is new. Retaining quality employees for such a demanding industry is always difficult, along with keeping all equipment in top condition. The work is challenging, but rewarding.

douthwaiteJohn Douthwaite
Production Partners
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Production Partners has enjoyed a successful 2014, our 17th year in the same location above the Old Spaghetti Factory on Seattle’s waterfront. We continue producing high quality television and radio commercials for our long-time loyal customers and have also added a couple of wonderful new clients and technological advances during 2014.

What projects did you work on?
We are proud to produce television, radio commercials and print advertising for Westmark Hotels in Alaska and the Yukon. A personal favorite is our monthly comedic “Anchorman” series for Performance Kia, written by John Douthwaite and starring comedian Dean Oleson. New client Schick Shadel Hospital has also provided stimulating projects for our creative team.

What could have made your year better?
Producing the Bud Light Super Bowl TV commercials would have made the year better, but other than that, I can’t complain. Well I could, but it wouldn’t do any good. Thank you to all our partners in production!

Bend Film ToddLooby_colorTodd Looby
BendFilm
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes, BendFilm 2014 was a record year in attendance, festival revenue, and a record number of Northwest-made films. Independent filmmaking and appreciation of independent filmmaking is alive and well in the Northwest!

What could have made your year better?
We would like to have even greater visibility and appreciation from Washington and Northern Oregon. We will work hard to increase our reach to these great areas of independent filmmakers and lovers.

pattiPatti Kalles
Kalles Levine Casting
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Better than last year.

What projects did you work on?
National Swiffer commercial; Amazon TV pilot Man in the High Castle.

What could have made your year better?
More work. No incentives to bring work here in Washington. More press to make Washington a friendly town to shoot in. Crew from out of town complain that the public doesn’t like anyone shooting in Seattle. We need press and more help from the government.

EMAEd Mellnik
EMA Video Productions, Inc.
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
This was a great year for live video streaming events. I think live streaming has come of age. Most people even know what live streaming is, which is different than only a year or two ago when it was a vague term for most.

What projects did you work on?
In 2014 EMA Video streamed a musical play by The Northwest Children’s Theatre to the Doernbecher Children’s Hospital; we streamed a four-day Holistic Medical Conference in Minneapolis; we worked on the Portland Blues Festival with 8 cameras and sent the mix to two jumbotron screens; and as the videographer for the Oregon Ballet, we recorded several of their performances. Those were the highlights, but we loved doing the smaller jobs this year as well.

What could have made your year better?
The only negative thing about 2014 was that it went by too fast! I hope there will be more groups running conference events deciding to stream the event live on the web this next year.

colleenbell (2)Colleen Bell
Bell Agency
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes, a very successful year. In the past two years, the Bell Agency has done better than any year in our 23-year history. We have developed a new business plan that has brought in many more clients, talent and work. Our talent base is some of the hardest working, loyal talent in Washington and Oregon. We know it takes hard work to make it in this economy and we have continued to meet this challenge head on. We have had a talent in almost every production that has come into Washington and Oregon due to the high caliber of our talent. We understand that we can only be as good as the talent we ask to join our agency.  The Bell Agency talent have booked jobs with Amazon, Nordstrom, Mazda, Chevy, Les Schwab, Microsoft, NFL, Sounders, WSU, Grimm, The Librarians, Fred Meyer, Puffs, Disney, Zumiez, Carhartt, Boeing and so many more just this year.

What could have made your year better?
Loyalty from our talent is what drives us to continue to grow successfully. Despite rumors that the Bell Agency has changed its name in the Oregon market, we want to assure everyone that we are still one agency thriving in both Washington and Oregon. All in all, the year was very successful and we couldn’t be more proud of our talent, and more thankful for our loyal clients.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAJon Nigbor
Media272, Inc.
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes, 2014 was very successful. We saw our sales and production more than double.

Why?
Two years ago, video was a “nice to have.”  Now, it is a “need to have.”

What could have made your year better?
Business owners are more reluctant than ever to spend. Taxes, health care, and paperwork are horrible time and resource drains. The uncertainty that taxes will increase disproportionately because someone believes “they deserve to pay more” is outrageous. Business owners deserve every reward they’ve earned.

Kathleen Lopez, MS
Location Manager
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes! Successful. I sent the production designer for a series pilot to Seattle/Woodinville.

What could have made your year better?
Increase in the Washington film incentive.

Amey René
Amey René Casting
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes! We were lucky enough to work on the NIKE commercial “Train it True,” featuring Richard Sherman, which showcased a lot of local PNW talent and was directed by the legendary music video director Mark Romanek. We did the local Seattle casting for the feature film Captain Fantastic, which is the directorial debut of actor Matt Ross and stars Viggo Mortensen and shot in Woodinville, Washington. In 2014, Amey René Casting Seattle also got its own permanent offices. We are located in the Saturn Building in Fremont.

What could have made your year better?
We are working on providing continual audition workshops for PNW actors. With more and more nationally recognized projects coming to shoot in the Northwest, we want actors to be ready to showcase their talents and book the job!

Eric Goetz
Composer
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes.

What projects did you work on?
I scored four animated short films for Seattle University and The Gates Foundation, and worked on a number of iPhone/iPad apps.

What could have made your year better?
As a composer, I feel like I’ve hit a glass ceiling in Seattle’s film industry. This year, I had seven films in SIFF, but made a combined total of less than $10K on them. When bigger budget films shoot here, they inevitably end up doing their post in L.A., regardless. If it weren’t for one or two really good local video game clients, I would not be able to earn a living as a film composer in Seattle.

Kyle LeMire
miracleADwallet.com
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was a successful year for Miracle AD Wallet, LLC. Mostly because it was our first. I started the film equipment e-commerce company to sell Call Sheet Wallets to eco-friendly ADs and PAs: The Miracle AD Wallet. We donate all profits to programs like Plant-it-2020, that reforest and reduce carbon emissions worldwide.

What projects did you work on?
This year alone, we’ve distributed Call Sheet Wallets to Todd Haynes’ Carol, Portlandia Season 5, House of Cards Season 3, CSI: Cyber, among others. And we’ll now be available not only on www.MiracleADwallet.com, but also on FilmTools.com and in their three L.A.-area stores.

What could have made your year better?
2014 couldn’t have been better.

Doc Thoemke
TMKey Film
What projects did you work on in 2014?
tmkeyfilm.com provides HD underwater filmography (with no divers) and nearshore salmon habitat assessment documentation in Puget Sound’s deepest substrate. 2014 completed projects: Chehalis River underwater filming lost Gill Nets called Ghost Nets 6; tons of nets removed. Located invasive species club tunicate (sea squirts) in Hood Canal, Puget Sound. Identified substrate hot spots, E. coli in the drinking water, Sea Snow, red and green algae. Started the TMKey Film YouTube channel.

What could have made your year better?
Expanded funding for research filming health dangers to the public. Serious changes taking place in regards to E. coli and red algae—your drinking waters are unsafe. The health of Puget Sound has around 20 more years. Big surprise—health dangers to walk the beach, play in the sand, shellfish toxins. More is coming.

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