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June 24, 2013

Update from Ontario Representative in LA – June 21, 2013

TORONTO ONTARIO film office - A partnership of the Ontario Media Development Corporation, City of Toronto and FilmOntario.

WEEKLY UPDATE June 21, 2013
from Kelly Graham-Scherer, Los Angeles Representative - torontoontariofilm@gmail.com

Happy Friday everyone,

I hope you are well on this first official day of summer. I am eagerly anticipating the Association of Film Commissioners International Locations Trade Show in Los Angeles next weekend. I will be joined down here by OMDC Locations Consultant Janice Reid-Johnston and Toronto Film and Television Office Manager Eric Jensen, who are also in town for the Ontario Night party next week. If you are in L.A. next Wednesday the 26th be sure to join us at El Cid (4212 Sunset Blvd) from 7-10 p.m.

The film industry lobby here in Los Angeles scored a partial victory this week when the City Council voted unanimously to scrape the paint from a downtown bike lane and redo it with less paint and in a darker shade of green. As reported in the L.A. Times below, the decision caps a two-year controversy that pitted the local bike lobby against the muscle of Hollywood, which insisted the lane's color had made filming on the street nearly impossible. http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-bike-lane-paint-20130620,0,2575439.story

Embattled Toronto mayor Rob Ford's recent vote against Toronto International Film Festival funding made headlines in the Hollywood Reporter this week. Although the lead in the story below says the Ford scandal is "starting to take its toll on the city's film industry" the story goes on to asset that the funding was approved by a "commanding 32 votes" and fails to elaborate on any impact Ford's troubles may be having on the industry. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/rob-ford-scandal-mayor-votes-569927

Excitement over the imminent opening of Toronto-shot Pacific Rim is building and there are already talks of a sequel. The L.A. Times this week spoke with director Guillermo del Toro. http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-et-ct-guillermo-del-toro-talks-pacific-rim-visuals-and-potential-sequel-20130618,0,6311082.story

The competition between Ontario and British Columbia for production dollars continued to generate news this week when the B.C. Finance Minister told the Globe and Mail, “As a country, and individual provinces within the country, we are better off to stop competing to see who can send the biggest cheque to Hollywood.” http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/bc-wants-truce-with-ontario-quebec-on-film-tax-credits/article12626487/

Animation giant Dreamworks is in expansion mode: as detailed in the L.A. Times below CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg has announced deals with Netflix and Germany's leading children's TV channel and says the company will produce 1,200 animated episodes of TV shows in the next five years. http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-et-ct-dreamworks-katzenberg-20130618,0,7750317.story

And finally this week, many fans the world over have been saddened by the untimely death of Sopranos actor James Gandolfini. As reported in the Los Angeles Times below, his brilliant acting did more than entertain the masses, it put HBO on the map, which heralded the beginning of the rise of cable networks, ultimately changing the television landscape. http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-et-ct-sopranos-james-gandolfini-hbo-20130619,0,7454434.story

Kelly Graham-Scherer
Los Angeles Representative
Toronto/ Ontario Film Office

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