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Film commissioners' Locations Show brings global stage to L.A.

The event is expected to draw 2,500 film industry executives, producers and location scouts eager to find the latest information about where to shoot their projects.

June 16, 2012|Los Angeles Times
  • Martin Cuff is the executive director of the Assn. of Film Commissioners International.
Martin Cuff is the executive director of the Assn. of Film Commissioners… (unknown )

Film commissioners from Indonesia to Uruguay to New Orleans converged on the Los Angeles Convention Center on Friday for the 27th annual Locations Show.

About 500 exhibitors from 40 countries are attending the two-day event, which is expected to draw 2,500 film industry executives, producers and location scouts eager to find the latest information about where to shoot their projects and what kind of incentives they can fetch.

Hosted by the Assn. of Film Commissioners International, this year's event marks the trade group's inaugural offering of speakers and panels on production trends, tax credits, film financing and other topics.

"It's the first time we've had a dialogue with ourselves about things we wanted to talk about," AFCI Executive Director Martin Cuff said. "This allows us to have a different conversation about what film commissions are and to attract people who might not otherwise come to the show."

It's also the first time that AFCI has held the event downtown. Last year, the Locations Show commissioners gathered at the Burbank lot of Walt Disney Studios in conjunction with the Producers Guild of America. The show was previously held in Santa Monica.

Organizers changed the venue in part because they wanted to hold the show concurrently with the opening weekend of the Los Angeles Film Festival, which is being held at nearby L.A. Live. That event runs through June 24. The film festival draws more than 90,000 visitors and is produced by the nonprofit arts organization Film Independent and sponsored by The Times.

"It's a natural tie-in for us because we will get a whole base of independent filmmakers who need this kind of information," Cuff said in an interview with The Times in February.

Cuff, who has run film commissions in Colorado and Cape Town, South Africa, was tapped earlier this year to run AFCI, a nonprofit educational group that represents 300 film commissions worldwide.

The Locations Show is free and open to the public. Guest speakers include Frederick Huntsberry, chief operating officer for Paramount Pictures; Cean Chaffin, producer of "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo"; and Evan Glodell, director of"Bellflower."

Richard.verrier@latimes.com

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