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What's happening to LA?


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#1 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 02:47 PM

So I'm spending a few days in Los Angeles, for entirely random reasons. I keep calling people I know to see if they want to have coffee or lunch or whatever it is we do in southern california, but they're all in Atlanta or Vancouver.

It's happened so many times I'm considering putting together an article for publication called something like "where have all the movies gone." Now, I'm sure I've just been unlucky, but honestly: is it quiet here, or what?

And in other news, anyone who's not got anything to do this weekend, let me know, because I'm bored and lonely. Well, not entirely bored and lonely, but it's always good to put a face to the forum handle.

P
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#2 Macks Fiiod

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 03:18 PM

Go see Lonzo play at the Staples Center


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#3 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 03:49 PM

A lot of it is down to the time of year. LA quietens down generally after Thanksgiving. People seem to just vanish until January.


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#4 Landon D. Parks

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 07:37 PM

CA is, in general, hemorrhaging actual film production. While its still the home turf of the studios, more and more productions are choosing to shoot in other States, and Canada. If you look at pretty much any major film, you'll find that it was not shot in LA, or even California. Hell, most TV series (short of sitcoms) are not shot there either. LA is good if you're looking to hang out with studio executives.

 

Don't live in LA, but that is my take on it. Might be wrong.

 

PS) Come to Cincinnati, I'll have coffee with ya :)


Edited by Landon D. Parks, 01 December 2017 - 07:40 PM.

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#5 Samuel Berger

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 07:59 PM


Don't live in LA, but that is my take on it. Might be wrong.

 

You haven't had it bad until you've been without sunlight for a few months straight like we do here in Seattle.


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#6 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 08:14 PM

CA is, in general, hemorrhaging actual film production. While its still the home turf of the studios, more and more productions are choosing to shoot in other States, and Canada. If you look at pretty much any major film, you'll find that it was not shot in LA, or even California. Hell, most TV series (short of sitcoms) are not shot there either. LA is good if you're looking to hang out with studio executives.

 

Don't live in LA, but that is my take on it. Might be wrong.

 

 

LA is busier than it's been in a long time, since the tax credits started to work.

 

But you don't live here, so you wouldn't know that. 

 

:)


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#7 Landon D. Parks

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 08:20 PM

Yes, but aren't the tax credits still lottery-based and capped? They use to be anyway. In Ohio, any production spending $300k or more gets a 35% refundable credit, and I believe its roughly the same deal in Georgia (or similar). Unless CA has made a major overhaul of their system, which I think has been well overdue if they have. While LA might be getting more film production, it's still a fact that when you look at the numbers: very few major films actually shoot there. 


Edited by Landon D. Parks, 01 December 2017 - 08:22 PM.

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#8 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 09:18 PM

Yes, but aren't the tax credits still lottery-based and capped? They use to be anyway. In Ohio, any production spending $300k or more gets a 35% refundable credit, and I believe its roughly the same deal in Georgia (or similar). Unless CA has made a major overhaul of their system, which I think has been well overdue if they have. While LA might be getting more film production, it's still a fact that when you look at the numbers: very few major films actually shoot there. 

My point was that while you were correct that historically LA has been a victim of runaway production, the current situation is better than it has been in years. LA has been very busy this year, and many productions have struggled to find quality crew because of the sheer demand. It's easy to read internet commentary on the state of the industry, but unless you live and work here, you're not getting the full picture.


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#9 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 10:03 PM

I walked past two sets of white trucks in the last ten minutes.
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#10 dan kessler

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 10:57 PM

Visual effects virtually gone


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#11 Samuel Berger

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Posted 01 December 2017 - 11:11 PM

Visual effects virtually gone

 

Any sources for this? That is my industry, which I'm not working in because I had to leave L.A. for Seattle. All my fellow VFX people are working, though only a handful still in L.A...


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#12 dan kessler

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 01:32 AM

Used to be my industry, too.   LA was the center of this universe in the '90's, but the offshoring started in earnest with the new century.  Last two giants to fall were Rhythm and Hues, which went bust, and Sony Imageworks, which went to Vancouver.  Only a few scraps remain.


Edited by dan kessler, 02 December 2017 - 01:33 AM.

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#13 Gregory Irwin

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 12:10 PM

I've been in the camera department for 38 years and counting.  I'm also a native Southern Californian.  Since union, big budget feature films have been my bread and butter since the 1980s, I feel very qualified to comment on this.  Everything I've worked on for the past 10+ years has been elsewhere other than Los Angeles.  For the first time in years, I worked on a Johnny Depp picture earlier this year in LA and that has been the exception.  Every other job of mine has been either abroad, New Orleans or Atlanta.  Mainly the latter.  My camera rental house even had to open an office in Atlanta in order for it to continue to do business with the Hollywood studios.  Thus, since I've been living on the road for most of my adult life and am pretty tired of suitcases, I decided to buy a home in the Atlanta area.  And I LOVE IT!  I still own my Newport Beach, CA home but the work is here and the quality of life is here - or at least that's my opinion at this stage of my life.  

 

As for the Georgia tax credits, the corporate attorney that helped me run the red tape gauntlet of opening my company here in Atlanta, was the co-author of the tax credit legislation here in Georgia.  Now, I have a deeper understanding of how it works and what the expected longevity of it is.  The tax credits are a bought and sold commonity similar to stocks and bonds.  Buyers can buy "interest" in a film project for their own tax strategy and benefit.  The entire state benefits economically and it's a bi-partisan win for Georgia.  It is widely anticipated to last for at least the next 10 years or more and that's about all I have left in my career anyway.

 

Sorry I missed you Phil!  Come on down South and I'll show you around!!!

 

G


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#14 Richard Boddington

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 01:22 PM

, and Sony Imageworks, which went to Vancouver.  Only a few scraps remain.

 

ILM opened an office in Vancouver as well.  This has happened largely because the US government has made it impossible for companies to bring in non US workers.  While the Canadian government takes a free for all approach and anyone can come to Canada.  VFX companies draw artists from all over the globe, and if you can only hire Americans it makes things very difficult for your VFX business.

 

R,


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#15 Richard Boddington

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 01:24 PM

  It is widely anticipated to last for at least the next 10 years or more and that's about all I have left in my career anyway.

 

Great, in 10 years I will finally be able to hire you, as you'll be in my budget range at last. :)

 

R,


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#16 Adam Frisch FSF

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 01:55 PM

LA for commercials keeps a pretty steady pace and always have. Yes, most of my work is travel, but when it's US based it's often LA, sometimes NY. Love shooting in LA, the crews and the support is second to none.


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#17 Gregory Irwin

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 04:43 PM

LA for commercials keeps a pretty steady pace and always have. Yes, most of my work is travel, but when it's US based it's often LA, sometimes NY. Love shooting in LA, the crews and the support is second to none.

 

 

I agree Adam about the LA crews! The funny thing is to note that most of my colleagues who work in the top 1% of LA based crews don't live in LA!  That's the wonderful thing about this business is that you are not required to live where you work.  In reality, my entire career is based in LA but I've never lived in LA.  Not one day of my life with the exception of college.  Newport Beach is way south and I commuted in for over 30 years.  I'm still based out of LA but now I get to sleep in my own home while I work and when I must travel I know I've cut that amount of time way down.

 

The real straw that broke the back was in 2016, I spent a whopping two weeks at home in Newport Beach, CA.  I have a gorgeous Spanish/Mediterranean home there with full ocean and city views that I rarely enjoy. My camera preps in Los Angeles required hotel stays and the work took me to Cuba, Atlanta, Hawaii, Atlanta.  I just couldn't take it anymore.  Now I own a new custom, beautiful home on an acre of land and waterfront on a lake.  It's peaceful. Coming home from the work chaos is like returning to my little piece of Shangrala!!!  I will still work in LA but home is finally not in a hotel.

 

G


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#18 dan kessler

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 06:32 PM

Hey Greg, I live in Newport Beach, too.  If you need a house sitter, I'll do it for free! ;)


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#19 dan kessler

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 07:12 PM

 

ILM opened an office in Vancouver as well.  This has happened largely because the US government has made it impossible for companies to bring in non US workers.  While the Canadian government takes a free for all approach and anyone can come to Canada.  VFX companies draw artists from all over the globe, and if you can only hire Americans it makes things very difficult for your VFX business.

 

R,

The story most often told is that producers employing vfx went chasing the tax subsidies offered elsewhere.

There was always a multinational workforce everywhere I worked in LA.


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#20 Richard Boddington

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 07:35 PM

The story most often told is that producers employing vfx went chasing the tax subsidies offered elsewhere.

There was always a multinational workforce everywhere I worked in LA.

 

Have you tried to hire foreign workers lately?  Give it a try.

 

WETA in New Zealand relies on a majority of non New Zealand VFX artists in order to maintain a viable business, as NZ only has 4.5M people.  I realize the US has 330 million, but the VFX industry needs access to the best talent, regardless of citizenship.

 

R,


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