My name is Dan Diaz. I operate a small props warehouse in Worcester, MA. Westerman Store is a local small business that sells restaurant equipment, so it’s a surprise to many when they pull into our parking lot on any given day and see one or more motion pictures trucks sitting in our parking lot loading televisions, couches, lamps, huge mixers, stoves, etc.
A few years back, we were approached to help set up a cafeteria kitchen for Shutter Island, followed shortly by The Surrogates, Furry Vengeance, and Knight and Day. We loved the challenge of working hand in hand with the buyers and decorators to help create the vision they were given to create. Many films later, we now operate a full props warehouse!
It came at a great time for us because the restaurant industry was facing tough times. The tax incentive was bringing productions to Massachusetts, and because of the extra work, we avoided having to lay off any workers. The props shop has gotten so busy that we have had to hire more workers just to keep up with it.
I am often buying items from local vendors and craigslist, putting money directly into the hands of great local folks. We use many local vendors ourselves to get what we need to rent to the film industry. I can’t even begin to tell you the amount of fuel, shrink wrap, gloves, cleaning supplies, etc. that we have to buy locally just to keep up with the demand of the props shop.
I truly believe that the film industry in Massachusetts is mainly driven by the tax incentives designed to bring more revenue into the state. Well, all I can say is that, from where I stand, it’s working! It’s growing and it should stay!