Collaborative Behaviors can strengthen NEO film industry

Alex Michaels (Prelude2Cinema) lead our forum this evening begining with a call to action: everyone in the film industry will benefit from working together. Alex suggested we place renewed value on some important behaviors: the value of being adaptable, having a clear vision that is inclusive of others and sharing resources with others so everyone can benefit. The Knight film incubator initiative will be a co-operative effort everyone will benefit from.

Tasteful value placement in cinema was another topic of conversation. These are strategically well placed paid for commercial items. We are unaccustomed to seeing product placement in independent films; but we do see this approach to commerce in commercial film. Alex has applied product placement to the independent films - an entrepreneurial trend just beginning. Alex reminded us to think about the long list of credits at the end of every movie: each name represents a job. Prelude2Cinema also hires local talent and does not rely on out-of-state labor.

Chris Carmody (Cleveland Film Commision) provided an update of the Cleveland Film Commission's mission and activity. The Film Commission is a Northeast Ohio support organization that helps to market Cleveland to out-of-state movie production companies encouraging them to shoot in Cleveland. Chris also helps to facilitate logistics and talent when companies come into town.

NEO has huge assets: actors, buildings, facility and arts patrons such as Cleveland entrepreneur, Dave Perkowski. Dave is a Cleveland developer who has renovated facility space to support local artists. Chris reminded us competition is stiff with other states offering significant incentives. Chris's network has advocated and lobbied for additional supportive legislature to strengthen the use of tax dollars as incentives.

Summary & Next Steps: The region can benefit by creating a collaborative, engaged, diverse NEO film industry. We need to identify resources at our colleges and universities, locate scattered individual efforts and improve collaboration capabilities and alignment. REALNEO has offered to create a Tuesday Roundtable (City Club) to support ongoing efforts to strengthen NEO's existing film industry and engage others around next steps for Knight Studio's incubator. If you are interested in participating, email:


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