Colleen Bell's California "Fam" Tour
CFC Executive Director Colleen Bell (center) at Paramount Studios with Paramount's Shawn Covell, SVP of Government Affairs (left) and Jessica Kwon, Sr. Coordinator of Government Real Estate & Community Affairs
Location professionals and studio/network execs are often invited to filming destinations for "fam" tours - "fam" being short for "familiarization." The goal is to help them learn about locations and infrastructure. It's also an opportunity to meet local filmmakers, union reps, film commissioners and vendors.

Colleen Bell, the CFC's new executive director, has been on her own California fam tour of sorts to meet stakeholders and get up-to-speed on the state's vast production resources. She has visited state partners at Caltrans, the CHP and Cal Fire; major studios including Disney, Fox, Paramount, Sony and Warner Bros.; as well as numerous indie studio facilities, movie ranches, etc. She has also attended presentations at leading post production houses such as LucasFilm's Industrial Light & Magic and Technicolor Sound, to name just a couple.

Colleen will continue to meet with industry decision-makers, as well as officials from all levels of government and film offices across the state that work in partnership with the California Film Commission.
Related News Stories:  
Working to promote on-set safety -- (from left) Deputy State Fire Marshal & Motion Picture/Entertainment Safety Liaison Ramiro Rodriguez, Cal Fire Asst. Deputy Director Daniel Berlant, CFC Executive Director Colleen Bell, Acting State Fire Marshal Mike Richwine, Fire Engineering & Investigations Division Chief Al Adams, CFC Deputy Director Eve Honthaner and Deputy State Fire Marshal/Fireworks Program Coordinator Vijay Mepani.

Upcoming Progress Report Will Provide Data Thru Year-Four of Expanded Program 2.0 
Each year, the California Film Commission issues an annual Progress Report on the state's Film & Television Tax Credit Program. This year's report, which will be released in November, will include comprehensive data on the first four years of Program 2.0.

Last year's report affirmed that Program 2.0 was achieving its goal of sustained growth in film/TV production and employment statewide.

The new report will show continued progress for year-four, with significant growth in below-the-line employment, big-budget film and TV projects (including TV series relocating from other jurisdictions) and production activity beyond the Los Angeles 30-Mile Zone. In addition, it will report that a growing number of students are being helped by Program 2.0's Career Readiness Initiative.

The latest data bodes well for what lies in store for the current fifth and final year of Program 2.0, as well as next year's launch of Program 3.0.

To get a copy of the 2019 Report (and other timely CFC info), please subscribe for our Production Alerts.

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For TV Projects
November 4 - 8, 2019

For Feature Films
March 9 - 13, 2020

NOTE: On November 11, the CFC will announce projects selected for the film application period held October 7 - 11.


Janice Hahn serves on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors representing the 4th District. Following in the footsteps of her father, former County Supervisor Kenny Hahn, she has devoted her life to public service. Ms. Hahn began her career as a teacher. She then served as a member of the Los Angeles Charter Reform Commission and was elected to the L.A. City Council to represent the 15th District. As a councilmember, she chaired the Trade, Commerce and Tourism Committee. She was elected to Congress in 2011 to represent California's 36th District (later the 44th District after redistricting), before returning to local government in 2016. 

Brian Pendleton is a renowned philanthropist and entrepreneur. He serves as a board member for CauseForce - the peer-to-peer fundraising company he founded to help charitable organizations. CauseForce programs have raised nearly $1 billion for life-saving research and care for leading institutes around the world. He also created and led the 100,000-person #ResistMarch as the successor to L.A.'s annual Pride Parade.

Isaiah Sandoval recently joined the California Film Commission as the new Tax Credit Coordinator. He previously worked for the California Department of Public Health and served in the U.S. Marine Corps. He's a California native and graduate of CSU Los Angeles.
Recent and Upcoming Feature Films
Ford v. Ferrari (11/15/19) and Bombshell (12/20/19)

Ad Astra (9/20/19), Lucy in the Sky (10/4/19) and Jexi (10/11/19)

Join the CFC at the Downtown L.A. Film Festival on Sunday, October 27th for a special panel discussion titled "Secrets to a Successful DTLA Film Shoot."

High-level experts will discuss how to leverage city resources, smart community relations and help from the local film office to ensure a successful shoot.  

The panel, moderated by CFC Deputy Director Eve Honthaner, will include:  
  • Kevin James - Director & Chief Liaison, Mayor's Office of Film & TV Production 
  • Paul Audley - President, FilmLA 
  • Tim Hillman - Location Manager (Lethal Weapon/series, Shameless, CSI: Cyber, CSI: NY
  • Veronique Vowell - Location Manager (Grey's Anatomy, How to Get Away with Murder, Station 19
  • Jim Scura - Producer (S.W.A.T., Angie Tribeca, Colony, Public Morals, The Librarians)
The panel will be held between 2:30 and 3:30 p.m. at Regal L.A. Live, 1000 W. Olympic Blvd. It's FREE to attend the panel discussion (registration NOT required).  
Click HERE for the full Panels & Events schedule.   
Tickets for festival films are $15, with full day passes available. Use discount code "downtown25" to receive a 25% discount. More information is available at

Ridgecrest and Northeast Kern County
Otherworldly! More than 500 spire-like rock formations make up Trona Pinnacles. Once underwater, these calcium carbonate structures now reach for the sky, with some ascending up to 140-feet high.

You'll Find Spectacular Terrain to Depict Everything From the Old West to Far-Off Planets

Ridgecrest is your gateway to some of California's most versatile and visually dynamic filming locations. Just 150 miles northeast of Los Angeles off US Highway 395, it offers sprawling desert and highway panoramas with dry lakes, mountains, tunnels, mines and some of the most extraordinary geological formations in the Mojave Desert.

It has been the setting for everything from wild west ghost towns to far off galaxies. Popular locations include Fossil Falls, Cinder Dry Lake Bed and the Trona Pinnacles - a unique landscape of more than 500 porous rock spires rising as high as 140 feet. The Ridgecrest area has inspired the imagination of many filmmakers. Projects include Planet of the Apes, Westworld, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Holes, Fast and the Furious 7, Jurassic Park and A Wrinkle in Time.

The City of Ridgecrest offers shopping, hotels and restaurants - all within minutes of the region's otherworldly locations. The Ridgecrest Regional Film Commission works closely with location scouts, production members, land management specialists and local law enforcement to ensure shoots go smoothly and safely.

For more information, contact Ridgecrest Regional Film Commissioner Doug Lueck or Assistant Film Commissioner Elizabeth Nalagan at 760-375-8202 / |

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 Colleen Bell (center) with students at USC's Annenberg School of Communication and Journalsim after guest speaking on the topic of image management and public relations. 
Recent CFC appearances and community outreach include:  
  • NewFilmmakers Los Angeles August Film Festival celebrating films shot in California (Los Angeles)
  • Film Liaisons in California Statewide (FLICS) Meeting (Long Beach)
  • Location Managers Guild International (LMGI) Awards (Santa Monica)
  • USC Annenberg School for Communication (Los Angeles)
  • Legislative Update with State Senator Maria Elena Durazo (Los Angeles)
(from left) CFC Tax Credit Program Director Nancy Rae Stone, State Senator Maria Elena Durazo and Paramount SVP of Government Affairs Shawn Covell were featured speakers at the Senator's legislative update event on Sept. 26th.


The California Film Commission is once again partnering with Boutique Editions to publish a new edition of Location California - the large-format glossy print (and digital) magazine showcasing film and TV productions, locations, facilities and service providers across the Golden State. The 2020 edition will debut next April, with initial distribution at the Cannes Film Festival.
Opportunities for Sponsors:
Sponsorship opportunities abound for vendors seeking to reach production industry decision makers here in California and across the globe. For sponsorship information, contact Nicki Webber at
Opportunities for Photographers:
We're looking for stunning high-res photos of locations across California to feature in the magazine's pictorial section. For inspiration and prior samples, check out the page-turner digital version of the 2019 magazine (as well as previous editions).   
Please send photo submissions to Eve Honthaner at
Include caption info regarding the location, photo credit, any notable film/TV projects shot there (optional) and any special location features that may be relevant to filmmakers.

"I'm thrilled to be shooting in my home state of California. Not only was I born and raised here, but, as everyone knows, the California Raisins were a major creative influence, which I think will definitely rub off on this production." 
Andy Samberg
Producer & Star of the Independent Feature  
Palm Springs
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:


November 8, 2019

1:30 - 3:00 p.m. 

Los Angeles 

Recent Issues:


Summer 2019 


Winter 2019 





 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.
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(c) 2019 California Film Commission
Masthead Banner Photo taken in Shasta County by photographer Gene Knaebel