Governor Newsom with new CFC Executive Director Colleen Bell following the swearing-in ceremony
Colleen Bell, former US Ambassador to Hungary and producer at Bell-Phillip Television Productions, was appointed executive director of the California Film Commission by Governor Gavin Newsom on May 23rd. She was administered the oath of office by the Governor on June 18th at the State Capitol. 

The California Film Commission Board of Directors responded to the appointment with a warm welcome to Ms. Bell. CFC Board Chair Thom Davis said in a statement:

"I am pleased to be able to work with such a qualified individual as we strive to maintain California's status as the film and TV capital. Ms. Bell's prior experience in the entertainment industry will blend well with the existing CFC team, which also includes several industry professionals."

Ms. Bell brings decades of entertainment production, government and business experience to her new role as film commissioner.

Most recently, she was appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve as U.S. Ambassador to Hungary (2014-2017). As Ambassador and Chief of Mission of U.S. Embassy Budapest, Ms. Bell supervised a team of more than 300 and led engagement between the U.S. and Hungary on a range of issues including military cooperation, law enforcement and economic development.  

Prior to her diplomatic service, Ms. Bell was a producer at Bell-Phillip Television Productions -- an award-winning production company with content that reaches viewers in more than 100 countries across five continents. A three-time Emmy Award nominee, her artistic vision has been recognized for its positive impact on the lives of marginalized people worldwide.

Ms. Bell is also a devoted philanthropist and advocate committed to tackling complex policy challenges - from protecting natural-resources to preventing child-abuse.
It's easier than ever to connect with regional film offices across the state.

The CFC's new interactive map is your guide to all 58 film offices. Simply click on the map to display the jurisdiction, film office name and contact info, along with a link to the film office website. All data is updated regularly.

For more information, please contact California Film Commission Location Resource staff members Lisa Mosher ( / 323-817-4123) or Lee Bowdle ( / 323-817-4122).

This year's edition of Location California is stunning - full of spectacular photographs and great articles that beautifully showcase filming throughout the Golden State.

it includes behind-the-scenes stories on notable California-based productions including Bird Box, Captain Marvel and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. Other coverage focuses on commercial production, studio facilities, the California Film & TV Tax Credit Program and recent advancements to reduce the environmental impact of production. And of course there's an updated directory of regional film offices across the state.

Location California is distributed at major film festivals and industry events worldwide.  
A page-turner digital version is available on the CFC's website. Print copies are available upon request by emailing

CA flag

For Feature Films
October 7 -11, 2019

For TV Projects 
November 4 - 8, 2019

Upcoming Feature Films
Ad Astra
Ford v. Ferrari
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
NewFilmmakers Los Angeles "What's Your LA?" Competition  
Are you an indie filmmaker with a project that features Los Angeles in a starring role?

The California Film Commission is proud to once again partner with NewFilmmakers Los Angeles for the "What's You're L.A.?" competition -- a community outreach program that puts L.A.-focused small films on the big screen. It's a great opportunity to get noticed and compete for more than $60,000 in prizes.  
The submission deadline is Friday, August 23rd. More info is available at  

All-star panel (from left): Evan Thomason (Santa Clarita Film Office), Steven Wolfe (Sneak Preview Entertainment), Tasha Day (Long Beach Film Office), Kent Matsuoka (Location Manager), Amy Kradolfer (FilmLA) and Amy Lemisch (California Film Commission).
On March 21st, the California Film Commission helped kick-off the 2019 Golden State Film Festival by presenting a panel titled "Film Commissions: The Indie Producer's Secret Weapon - Save Time/Money by Tapping into State and Local Film Offices."   

The discussion covered a range of valuable film commission services -- from production planning, locations and permits to incentives and community outreach. Attendees learned how to work effectively with the CFC and local film offices across the state. 
Moderated by Amy Lemisch, the panel at the Hollywood & Highland Center featured some of the region's most experienced film office and production industry professionals and was attended by a standing room-only crowd of indie filmmakers.
Mare Island in Vallejo
Mare Island Causeway Bridge over the Napa River connects the city of Vallejo to Mare Island (on right). The bridge has appeared in many projects, including the Netflix series 13 Reason Why.

Former Naval Shipyard is Becoming a Bay Area Production Hub

Projects of every type and size will find what they need at Mare Island in Vallejo. With easy access to the entire Bay Area, the former naval shipyard has become a filming oasis. The Film Mare Island studio complex was launched in 2016 and includes purpose-built stages and facilities converted for film production. In addition, the entire island (800-plus acres) serves as a backlot with a mix of architecture representing various periods and settings - from maritime industrial to small town neighborhood. Mare Island is home to the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why and was the site for helicopter and exterior pyrotechnics scenes in Paramount's Bumblebee. Equipment is readily available via a partnership with Cinelease. Film Mare Island even offers a 5% local spend cash rebate on products and services from area vendors.

For more information, contact Mark V. Walter, General Manager of Film Mare Island at 707-651-9856 / and visit www.

(left) A bevy of boom lifts is part of the equipment readily available on the island. (right) Historic Building 1310 was once used to build warship components, but now houses three sound stages totaling more than 115,000 square feet.  
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. 
Amy Lemisch (left) with Lisa Pitney, VP of Government Relations for The Walt Disney Company, at the government affairs screening of Captain Marvel (in Sacramento)
Recent CFC appearances and community outreach include: 

  • FLICS (Film Liaisons in California Statewide) Board Meeting and visit to Mare Island production facility (Vallejo/Solano County)
  • Government affairs screening of Captain Marvel (courtesy of the Walt Disney Company) for state legislators and Sacramento stakeholders (Sacramento)  
  • Directors Guild of America production planning workshop (Los Angeles)
  • Dances With Films Festival panel - "Finance: Because Money Doesn't Grow on Trees" (Los Angeles) 

California's Longest-Serving Film Commissioner Leaves Distinguished Legacy
(left) CFC Outgoing Executive Director Amy Lemisch with FLICS President Cassandra Hesseltine. (right) CFC staff pays tribute to Amy for her 15 years of service. 
On May 10th, Amy Lemisch concluded her 15-year tenure as Executive Director of the California Film Commission. As the state's longest-serving film commissioner, she will be remembered as a champion for filming in California and as an incredibly effective, hard-working advocate who was instrumental in the creation, passage, implementation and expansion of the state's Film & TV Tax Credit Program, which she oversaw with integrity and purpose.

Amy fought tirelessly to curb runaway production, support in-state filmmakers and promote the Golden State as a premiere filming destination.  

Upon news of her departure, accolades flooded in to the CFC from well-wishers. The many sentiments included adjectives that ranged from "dedicated," "respected," and "tenacious," to "humble" and "kind."   

Thank you Amy for leading the CFC with hard work, integrity, tenacity, humility and kindness. You leave behind a lasting legacy.


"Our 'Rim of the World' director McG was determined to film at Mammoth Lakes to feature the wonderful unmolested scenery. In the end, he did just that... and It makes for an epic opening that sets the mood perfectly.

The setting in Mono County was exceptional, as were all of the cast and crew members. Most notably, Mammoth Lakes Resorts and the National Forest Service were super helpful, generous and accommodating." 
Bruce Gilles 
Line Producer/UMP, Rim of the World
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:


July 12, 2019


November 8, 2019

1:30 - 3:00 p.m. 

Los Angeles 

Recent Issues:


Winter 2019 



Summer 2018 




 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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323.860.2960 │ 800.858.4749
(c) 2019 California Film Commission
Masthead Banner Photo: The Huntington Beach Pier in Orange County. Photographer: Christian Feshser