Category Archives: Boom Operator

SMAFJ

Myth: If you work in film, you are “Hollywood” and make good money.
Fact: The majority of workers in this industry — particularly those in Massachusetts — are considered low-middle income families and thrive due to continued projects being brought to the area via film tax incentives.

It is one thing to threaten the film tax incentives because you think it will save Massachusetts money. But it is misguided to threaten the incentives because you want to provide “aid to low-middle income families” instead, when we ARE low-middle income families.

I’ve worked in New England for seven years and currently reside in Waltham, MA, due to the work and resources available. If jobs are removed from here, I won’t switch careers, I’ll change where I live.

That means I won’t spend taxes here. I won’t spend rent here. I won’t buy groceries, utilities, equipment, local services, etc. That might not seem like much from one individual, but what happens when you remove an entire workforce? That will be a devastating blow to Massachusetts income and tax revenue for ALL businesses/industries.

For us, filmmaking is not a hobby. It is our livelihood. And the film tax incentive is a sustainable platform to foster our industry; it has been proven successful in many other states. Remember: it’s not about creating jobs. It’s about bringing the work that already exists TO Massachusetts, thus benefiting everyone.

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My name is Peter Stevenson, and I have been working in the Massachusetts film and TV industry for roughly ten years. I work as a boom operator, sound utility, and video utility. I’m married and a home owner, thanks to film work allowing me to save up a down payment and continually pay my mortgage.

I am a Rhode Island resident, but before anyone tunes out, I’d like to point out that about 75% of my work is in Massachusetts, which does get a piece of my taxes. This brings me to two arguments I’ve heard against the film tax incentives I’d like to address (the pros of the tax credit have already been wonderfully addressed in other posts; if you haven’t already, please read them):

The first is that we shouldn’t have Massachusetts tax payers paying Hollywood actors’ salaries. This is not how it works. The credits go towards money spent on production in Massachusetts. Also, much like myself, these actors will have to pay a little bit of their taxes to Massachusetts since that is their work state. Even a little bit of $20 million is a lot of money.

The second argument I’ve heard is the one that says that “it’s not worth Massachusetts tax dollars just to have Hollywood glamor and excitement in Massachusetts.” Who ever argued that? No one ever said the incentive was worth their tax money so they can say they spotted JLaw at the local mall. We want the tax incentive for the positive effect it has for local people and businesses, not for some TMZ cell phone photo.

In conclusion, please don’t just think of the tax credit as an unnecessary luxury. It has been and can continue to be a true shot in the arm for local businesses and a way for working-class Massachusetts people to become part of the ever-shrinking middle class. These are people who buy homes, have their own businesses, employ people, raise their kids, and care about Massachusetts and making it a better place.

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My name is Joel Reidy. I have been working on film and television shows in Massachusetts and other states for 20 years. My state doesn’t have a competitive tax incentive so I have to travel for work. I spend months in Massachusetts hotels; I buy food and pay for car repairs, tolls, and clothing. What I don’t do is use the services my tax dollars help pay for. The Massachusetts film community is huge and the businesses that help support it are extensive. If the film tax incentive goes away in Massachusetts, I will have to go even further away to provide for my family, and so will many other tax payers.

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My name is Glenn W. Kane. I have been working in the Massachusetts film industry since 2004, when I was given the opportunity to use my acting and improv skills in Fever Pitch. Since then, I have worked on more than 25 projects, in jobs ranging from PA, to boom operator, to actor. This experience has allowed me to observe many talented actors and crew members, and I have in turn been able to teach and encourage my students to work towards being a part of this growing industry. Some of my former students have been employed as actors in films and one was just hired as a consultant for a film.

Without the tax incentives, these opportunities will dry up, not only for the current workforce but also for those graduating from our universities and hoping to live and work in a state they call home.

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Hello, my name is Ryan Baker. I grew up here in Massachusetts and, thanks to the film tax incentives, I am a proud homeowner and resident of North Andover, MA (Go Warriors!!).

I’ve been working full-time professionally in the Massachusetts film business since 2006 as a boom operator and sound utility. Outside of the amazing film career I’ve had here, I am very active in supporting the local creative arts/music community in any way that I can, as well spending time with family, friends, and rooting for the Bruins.

If the film incentives were to disappear, so would my livelihood. It would force me to sell my house and take me far from my family, my community, and the state that I love. Save Massachusetts film jobs!

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You hear that? People laughing… gasping… crying… People moved by the hard work and dedication of the thousands of talented filmmakers we have here in our state. And as our careers continue, so expands our ability to impact more people, both here in Massachusetts, and around the world.

My name is Tim Haber and I love my job. I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. I went to school at Bridgewater State College. After graduation in 2009, I worked multiple jobs while slowly getting into the film business.After years of hard work, I can finally afford to focus solely on filmmaking and story telling.The long days that I spend with my friends and family in the film industry have shown me that it is possible to provide for your family and enjoy what you do. That is because of the tax incentives and the passionate people here who love, live, and breath filmmaking.

There is so much passion in our work. There is so much emotion in what we do. We working in freezing temperatures in the harsh winter and shoot at beautiful Cape Cod beaches. We have historic landmarks and evergreen forests. This is why people come to film here — to make audiences feel something; to inspire people. From the brilliant students at our many universities to the hardworking fishermen on our coasts, there are so many stories to tell.  We’ve all worked so many years to make our dreams a reality. Let’s keep that dream alive.

 

save-ma-film-jobs_0196Hi. My name is Julia Korona. I’ve been working in the entertainment industry for eleven years, the last eight of which have been in Massachusetts. The FTC has been quite a blessing for me, as film work makes up a good chunk of my income.

Without that work, I would be forced to travel out of state to supplement my earnings. Through my work as a rigging electrician and sound utility, I have seen firsthand how the movies affect communities. While the FTC gives productions a financial break, it is the Massachusetts people and towns that truly benefit.

The majority of materials and services purchased on a production are purchased locally, and hundreds of local workers like me are employed, often for months on a single production. Please do not take the FTC away!

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My name is Kelly Doran. I’ve been working in the film industry for about 25 years. Without the film tax incentive in Massachusetts, I would have to travel for work. This means three to four months in another state, spending my money there. I’ve had some years before the tax incentive when I didn’t work a single day at home. Since the film tax incentive went into effect, I’ve been able to work in Massachusetts — the exception being in 2010, when there was talk of capping the incentive and productions just pulled out of the state.

I was born and raised in New England. I live in Massachusetts and I want to work in Massachusetts. This is my home. I love my job, and I love to be able to funnel my good fortune back into my community.

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