Category Archives: Associate Producer

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I’m from Detroit Michigan and around the time I knew my dream was to get involved with the movie industry there was a lot of talk about the film incentive that was happening in Detroit. A large studio was being built, they were talking about classes to train locals to get involved in the industry and I was excited to be a part of that world. Then the tax incentive was voted out and I knew that if I wanted to be in film then I couldn’t stay in Detroit.

I left my family and friends and moved to MA and within the last couple of years I’ve made a new family and new friends in this industry. I’ve worked in production, art department, construction, helped in the scenic world and coordinated and produced. I love film and I love the people here and the industry it creates for all the local businesses in all the departments I’ve helped in. Detroit is a place that needs jobs more then anything and needs businesses to be invigorated, the tax incentive could have done that like it does every day for MA but that opportunity was taken away. I don’t want MA to suffer in the same way and I cannot stress the amount of jobs, and business the incentive brings.

PLEASE take a moment to look at the faces of my new family and think what this film incentive means to each and every one of them.

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My name is Sharmane Franklin Johnson. I am an LA girl living in Massachusetts because of my husband’s job. When I moved here in 2010, I was a full-time office manager and events coordinator for an education company with a film degree that I hadn’t actively used in years. When that company went out of business, I got my first Massachusetts-based production gig on House Across the Street, directed by Arthur Luhn. I didn’t realize when I got here that film work would even be remotely possible, but that first production proved me wrong. Since then I have had wonderful opportunities on various documentaries and TV shows, especially over the last two years.

It has not always been easy to be an LA transplant here. I have been met with questions like “Why did you leave LA?” and “How well do you know the Boston industry?” on occasion, but I can honestly say that my best opportunities have been here in Massachusetts. Removing the tax incentive will ruin that for me as well as countless others who remain here because of the great opportunities or because they just simply can’t or won’t live in LA. The reasons don’t matter, but the impact on this state will. This will affect not only those of us that work in film/TV, but also restaurants, hotels, EMT/police/fire/security, janitors, carpenters, and drivers. So many other jobs and industries will feel the pinch in their pockets because the film opportunities will dry up here.

I have worked as a producer, associate producer, casting director, office PA, set PA, and promoter since I have been here. I have also received my master’s degree in entertainment business. I do not wish to see those opportunities disappear for myself or any of the bad-ass production folks I have met in this state. Just as I was getting ready to leave my part-time non-production office job, I hear this news and second guess my decision. It is a scary time for us. As it is, we are never 100% sure that we will have work next week or next month, but this change will most assuredly have many of us leaving the state or returning to non-production fields, and that will be tragic.

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