Latest Annual Report Affirms Sustained Growth in Film/TV Production and Employment Statewide 
CA flag
The latest Progress Report for California's expanded Film & Television Tax Credit Program 2.0 affirms that the state is achieving its goal of sustained growth in below-the-line employment and production spending.  

The report issued on November 2nd provides comprehensive data through year-three of the expanded tax credit program launched in 2015.

Highlights include:

Below-the-Line Employment - Hours worked by below-the-line crew in California grew 15.6% in 2017 compared to 2014 (the year before Program 2.0 began) according to data from the Motion Picture Industry Pension & Health Plans. 


Big-Budget Film Production - During year-three of Program 2.0, California added five additional big-budget films ("Call of the Wild," "Captain Marvel," "Ford v. Ferrari," "Island Plaza" and "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood"). To date, the program has attracted a total of 11 feature films with budgets over $75 million.

Relocating TV Series - During year-three, California attracted two additional relocating TV series (NBC's "Timeless" from Vancouver, and Amazon Studios' "Sneaky Pete" from New York). To date, the expanded tax credit program has gained a total of 15 relocating TV series from across the U.S. and Canada.


Production Activity Statewide - Under Program 2.0, projects have spent more than $78 million in 19 counties outside the Los Angeles 30-Mile Zone. This figure will continue to grow as more projects (for year-three and prior years) report their out-of-zone spending.


Through its first three years, Program 2.0 is on track to generate a total of nearly $6 billion in direct in-state spending, including $2.25 billion in qualified wages and $1.89 in qualified vendor expenditures, along with $1.85 billion in other expenditures that do not qualify for tax credits.

Read the CFC's  news release

Read the full 42-page report

For TV Projects:
February 4 - 8, 2019

For Film Projects:
February 25 - March 1, 2019

The CFC recently announced projects selected for the film application period held October 15 - 19 (see news release), and will soon announce projects selected for the latest TV application period held November 5 - 9.

The leadership team for our 2019 Board of Commissioners will look familiar, as Michael Nyman, Thom Davis and Lindy DeKoven have each been reelected for a second term. Michael will continue to serve as chair, while Thom will continue as vice chair and Lindy as secretary. As elected officers they will lead the Film Commission's Board, which includes five ex-officio members.

Michael Nyman recently launched Acceleration, a new investment vehicle and advisory firm. He has a distinguished 30-year career serving as chairman and CEO of powerhouse entertainment publicity/marketing firm PMK●BNC, and co-founder of Bragman Nyman Cafarelli. He was appointed to the CFC board in 2014 by Governor Jerry Brown and is regarded as an authority when it comes to bridging the worlds of entertainment and brands.

Thom Davis serves as business manager and principal officer of IATSE Local 80, Motion Picture Studio Grips, where he is responsible for contract negotiations, enforcement, member representation and general management of the organization. He is also 2nd international vice president on the IATSE General Executive Board and co-chair of IATSE District 2, which covers California, Nevada, Arizona and Hawaii. Thom is active with a range of industry organizations, serving as a trustee of the Motion Picture Industry Pension & Health Plans, vice president of the California Labor Federation and chair of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor.  

Lindy DeKoven is a novelist, television executive and producer who served as executive vice president of NBC Entertainment and NBC Productions, where she oversaw long-form programming. She also worked for Disney, Warner Bros. and Paramount. Other board appointments include the California Commission on the Status of Women, the California State Parks & Recreation Commission and the ERA Coalition. Lindy has authored two novels - "The Secret Life of Wishful Thinking" and "Primetime Princess."   

The California Film Commission has issued a series of updates regarding production in areas affected by the recent Woolsey Fire in Malibu. Permits are still unavailable for some state properties, including sections of PCH and several state parks and beaches.

Read the CFC's latest Production Alert

The California Film Commission is once again partnering with Boutique Editions to create another edition of Location California - the large-format glossy magazine showcasing film and TV productions, locations, facilities and service providers across the Golden State. The 2019 edition will be published next April, with initial distribution at the Cannes Film Festival.

Opportunities for Sponsors:
Location California offers a range of sponsorship opportunities for vendors seeking to reach production industry decision makers here in California and across the globe. For more information, contact Nicki Webber at

Opportunities for Photographers:
We're once again seeking stunning high-res photos of locations across California for the magazine's large format pictorial section. For inspiration and a sample of what we're looking for, check out the page-turner digital version of the 2018 magazine (as well as previous editions).

Send photo submissions to Laura Baptista at
Please include brief info regarding the location, how the photo should be credited, notable projects that have shot there (optional) and any special features of the location that may be relevant to filmmakers.


Permit Coordinator Helene Dervishian Retires After 15 Years at the CFC 

Helene retired in September after 15 years as a CFC permit coordinator and 25 years as a State employee.  Her warm smile and easy-going manner will be missed as her co-workers say good-bye and wish her well on her next chapter.


Laura Baptista, General Assistant
You're likely to see Laura's big smile when you arrive at the CFC office, as she's stationed at our front desk to handle reception and general office work. She joins us from the California Highway Patrol. She studied Cinema at San Francisco State University and also worked as a TV production assistant. In her spare time, Laura enjoys swimming, DIYing and studying to one day compete on Jeopardy.  

Brandy Davis, Permit Coordinator
Brandy is the latest addition to our permit department. She joins us from State Parks' Angeles District, where she worked for nearly three years. Brandy graduated from Cal State Northridge with a degree in Cinema & TV Arts. Before working for the State she produced a number of non-fiction programs - from clip shows and talk shows to docu-reality series. Brandy also served as casting director for an independent film and a short film that was part of the AFI Directing Workshop for Women.    

Revised Guidelines for Commercial UAS Operators  

The CFC recently issued revised guidelines for drone operators. Key changes include:
  • Section 333 Exemptions for the commercial use of small UAS (unmanned aircraft systems) are no longer valid, and all remote pilots should now operate under Part 107 Rules.   
  • Students enrolled at an accredited educational institution may now operate small UAS for school projects under hobbyist rules. Film permits, proof of UAS registration, $2 million in aviation coverage and other prerequisites are still required.
  • Mobile apps (e.g., AIRMAP and Skyward) are now available to provide near real-time authorization to operate drones in controlled airspace.
A complete list of revised UAS guidelines and a questionnaire to be completed by remote pilots are available via the CFC website's drone information page.


The Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood 
(from left) Center Red, Center Green and Center Blue anchor the landmark Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood.

Look familiar? This striking architectural landmark is filled with cinematic history and possibility  

The Pacific Design Center (PDC) is an enormous, and enormously colorful, landmark located in the heart of West Hollywood. Its 14-acre campus features dramatic public and private spaces including three massive glass-clad buildings (Center Blue, Center Green and Center Red), a branch of the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), two restaurants by Wolfgang Puck and a 294-seat luxury theater. There's also a two-acre plaza with lush landscaping, water features and terrace decks.

The iconic Center Blue building is the largest at 750,000 square feet and is affectionately referred to as "the Blue Whale" due to its size and hue. Its interior and exterior spaces have been transformed for numerous film and television productions including the award-winning feature "Her" (directed by Spike Jonze), HBO's "Westworld" and many commercials and reality TV projects. The PDC's open air spaces along San Vicente Boulevard are also frequently permitted as basecamp areas for productions filming in the area.

For more information, contact Eddie Robinson, Film Coordinator for the City of West Hollywood, at (323) 848-6489 /;

The Blue Lobby (left) and exterior of the 750,000 square foot "Blue Whale."

CFC In the Community 
As part of its effort to promote in-state production, the California Film Commission lends its time, resources and support to a wide range of industry/civic events and organizations. CFC team members are active in the community bringing stakeholders up-to-speed on issues ranging from tax credits to expanding career opportunities. 
CFC Executive Director Amy Lemisch (center with clasped hands) surrounded by FLICS members during a recent tour of historic movie palaces in downtown Los Angeles.
Recent CFC appearances and community outreach include: 
  • American Film Market (AFM) Location Expo (Los Angeles)
  • Hollywood Chamber of Commerce 2018 State of the Entertainment Industry Conference (Hollywood)
  • Los Angeles Citywide Film Task Force (Universal City)
  • FLICS (Film Liaisons in California Statewide) Meeting (Los Angeles)
  • Made in Hollywood Honors -- Emmy-Nominated Projects (Hollywood)
The CFC also hosted meetings with several international film delegations to promote opportunities to connect foreign film, TV, commercial and new media producers with California-based production resources. Recent meetings include a dual CFC/Visit California forum and tour for Indian filmmakers and a CFC round table for government officials and industry professionals from South Africa.

CFC In the News

Visit our online news digest ( for recent news stories featuring the California Film Commission and/or the state's Film & TV Tax Credit Program.
No Permit Fees on State-Owned Property!
The California Film Commission offers FREE permits for filming on state property. Charges are assessed to recover out-of-pocket costs such as review and monitor fees, as well as parking. There are many state-owned locations to choose from, so keep us in mind when you're looking for a low-cost location option.

Visit CFC's website for more info.
  Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter! 
The California Film Commission has a nifty Facebook page, Instagram feed and Twitter stream for you to get the latest info and links plus spectacular photos of California locations - from the iconic to the downright obscure.
Please give us a like/follow and stay connected!

Upcoming CFC

Board Meeting:


March 2019

(date TBD) 


Recent Issues:


Summer 2018 


Winter 2018 


Fall 2017 


 About the California Film Commission
The California Film Commission (CFC) enhances California's status as the leader in motion picture, television and commercial production.
A one-stop office for filmmakers, the Commission supports productions of all sizes and budgets. In addition to managing the state's Film & Television Tax Credit Program, services include an extensive digital location library, free online permitting, low cost use of state properties as shooting locations, and production assistance.
CFC Logo
323.860.2960 │ 800.858.4749
(c) 2018  California Film Commission