In Moviemaker‘s recently released print magazine, this year’s list of “Top 10 Cities to be a Moviemaker: 2013” was released, with Seattle securing an impressive ranking at number three. According to the article, Moviemaker brains determined which cities made the cut (and in which order) by cobbling together a range of statistics for each city, including: population, dollars generated by the film industry, the list of movie projects, cultural vibrancy, and availability of production facilities. This data helped narrow the assessment rubric to five criteria, against which each of 50 cities was scored. The criteria include: “Film Community” (scored on a 10-point scale), “Access to New Films” (10-point scale), “Access to Equipment” (7-point scale), “Cost of Living” (reverse 5-point scale), and “Tax Incentives” (4-point scale). The highest possible score is a 36. In future lists, Moviemaker intends to expand lists to rank the “Top Big Cities” to be a moviemaker, as well as the “Top Small Cities” and “Top Towns.” This way, places like Shreveport, Louisiana won’t have to compete with New York City and Maria, Texas can’t compete with Boston.
The first and second best cities for moviemakers in 2013 were Austin, Texas (with a score of 32), and New York City (with a score of 31). Seattle came in at number three (with a score of 30.5).
The following is the article text from Seattle’s section:
“Seattle is quickly becoming a ‘go-to’ city for small-budget moviemakers, with such recently acclaimed indies as Your Sister’s Sister, Safety Not Guaranteed, and Eden taking advantage of all the tax incentive goodies the city (and state) has to offer. ‘Shooting in Seattle was fantastic,’ remarks Rufus Williams, director of Butterfly Dreaming. ‘The city is a standout for its moody, light-varied looks. But, more than that the people here are enthusiastic and helpful; I was struck by the tight-knit film community, something that is a real blessing for an independent filmmaker. We benefited immeasurably from the [Office of Film and Music’s] help in finding great local crews and locations.’ The vibrant Seattle film industry supports over 5,000 jobs, 700 freelancers, and contributes $471 million to the city’s economy. And the city makes the filming process as easy as possible for moviemakers. The dedicated [Office of Film and Music] is a one-stop shop for all logistical production needs, and provides permits for use of all city-owned property — for just $25 per project ([for] up to 14 days) for low-budged film productions. Seattle also offers a number of financial incentives, including a 30 percent cash-back film incentive for productions that shoot in the city, as well as sales tax exemptions on rental equipment, vehicles used in production, and 30 consecutive days of lodging. Much like its independent music scene, Seattle is renowned as a hip, indie moviemaking hub, with a strong sense of community and collaboration. Film is serious business in Seattle, and a moviemaker would be hard-pressed to find a more welcoming, creatively inspiring environment to film his or her latest production. ‘The Seattle filmmaking community is a nurturing, inclusive and vibrant one, filled with folks who have a genuine passion for making movies,’ says Writer-Director Lynn Shelton (the upcoming Touchy Feely; My Sister’s Sister; Humpday) of shooting in her hometown. ‘Whether it’s a local director or an out-of-town company, our local crews bring so much talent, good spirit, and artistry to everything shot here. Seattle filmmakers will undoubtedly continue to deliver excellent home-grown films, building on the reputation of quality that’s been building for the past decade.’ Also, Moviemaker first appeared on the streets of Seattle back in 1993. The Emerald City must be doing something right.”
The next two top cities on this year’s list include: Los Angeles (number 4, score of 29), and Portland (number 5, score of 28.5).
For the full-length article, pick up a print edition of Moviemaker magazine at your local convenience store. The 2013 list is not yet available online (but 2012’s list is). (Statement valid as of January 22, 2013).