Archive | August 2013

Commercialize Seattle Launch

Washington Filmworks (WF), in partnership with the Seattle Office of Film + Music, is pleased to have launched Commercialize Seattle, a new business development campaign designed to drive local film production and advertising business. More than 350 people joined us at the August FMI Happy Hour to learn more about the new initiative and see elements of the marketing campaign; that’s a record attendance for the monthly event!

Seattle Mayor, Mike McGinn kicked off the presentation to a packed house of industry veterans, representing agencies, production companies, cast, and crew. Senator Jeanne  Kohl-Welles, prime sponsor of the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program, was also there to support the launch of the initiative.

Would you like to be a part of Commercialize Seattle? Interested production companies should register here.

Read More…

And the Winners Are…

48HFPIn July Washington Filmworks profiled the 48 Hour Film Project: Seattle (48HFP) on the eve of their largest competition to date.  As producer of the event, Krk Nordenstrom provided a glimpse into the history of 48HFP: Seattle and offered insight as to why the event has become the largest filmmaking competition in Washington State.

Congratulations to all the competing teams! The winners of the 2013 48 Hour Film Project: Seattle are available below. Where available, we’ve linked to the winning film. Plus be sure to head over to the 48HFP website to learn more about the 48 Hour Horror Film Project, which is coming to Seattle the weekend of November 8 – 10, 2013. Read More…

Local Producers Pump Up SIFF Cinema

Last month, the Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF) held a presentation entitled Independent Film Producing. Experienced local producers Mel Eslyn and Lacey Leavitt outlined the role of the indie producer and the mechanics of such a position. Using real world case studies and detailed insights, the course followed the job from development, to physical film production, through to distribution. Local filmmaker Ben Rapson was in attendance. He shared some of his takeaways on the class with WF for those who couldn’t attend. Thanks, Ben!


Nothing gets the creative juices flowing quite like getting nuts-&-bolts wisdom straight from the pros. And nothing creates a sustainable film community quite like experienced local filmmakers offering their knowledge to the next wave of local artists.

Seattle-based independent producers Mel Eslyn (Your Sister’s Sister, Touchy Feely) and Lacey Leavitt (Safety Not Guaranteed, Laggies) recently took over SIFF Cinema, to dish out four hours of juicy intel on producing. It was a rare and valuable opportunity to download direct experience from two ladies making a living making movies.

Eslyn & Leavitt greeted the 70-some-odd filmmakers in attendance with the modest intention of sharing some of their own experiences. The result wasn’t just informative – it was electrifying. Read More…

Join Us for the Launch of Commercialize Seattle

Please join us Wednesday August 28th for a very special Film Music and Interactive Happy Hour, as we launch Commercialize Seattle, a new business development campaign designed to drive local film production and advertising business. Seattle Mayor, Mike McGinn will kick off the presentation and introduce the key industry leaders who are driving this exciting new initiative. This FMI Happy Hour lasts from 5 -7 pm and takes place at Spitfire in Seattle.

Classifying Freelance Labor

In the most current issue of Media Inc. Magazine, Greg Smith, President of IATSE Local 488, and Bob Riggs, Business Agent for the union, shared a letter to area producers and production companies designed to address the growing practice of misclassifying freelance labor as independent contractors. Since Washington Filmworks is often asked about this practice, we wanted to share this valuable information with the community. Should you have questions or comments, you can find contact information for both Smith and Riggs in the letter.

Open the letter as a PDF.

Dear Production Executive:

There is a disturbing practice that has taken hold in our production community. Many production companies are utilizing the erroneous practice of misclassifying freelance labor as independent contractors. Presumably this is an attempt to gain an unmerited financial advantage in the bidding process.

IATSE Local 488 has devoted its own resources Read More…

News from the Innovation Lab

One year ago Washington Filmworks (WF) launched a pilot funding assistance program called the Filmworks Innovation Lab. The program is different than WF’s standard program and was designed to address several requests from our local filmmaking community, who had been asking for:

  • Programs that better nurture local, emerging filmmakers, offering opportunities to help advance their careers in the early stages
  • Funding to foster groundbreaking projects, new storytelling and production models, and emerging technologies
Applications from all corners of Washington.

So many stellar applications.

WF was overjoyed with the interest in the pilot program. Split between 2 cycles, the Innovation Lab received more than 50 applications throughout 2012 and 2013. The Film Cycle offered support for emerging Washington resident filmmakers, helming more traditional film projects intended for theatrical or television distribution. The Innovation Cycle was designed to invest in, and encourage, the development of original storytelling that capitalizes on new forms of production and technology. During both cycles WF worked with a jury of industry experts to assess dozens of quality applications from filmmakers living in all corners of the state.

Tony Fulgham’s Box Walk was the first of the Innovation Lab projects to go into production Read More…

Destination Washington

Whether you’re considering Washington for your next project, or simply want to take a virtual tour of our stunning state, Washington Filmworks can help. Last August we launched a Location of the Month newsletter to showcase the wide range of unique looks and resources in a number of jurisdictions around Washington.

In celebration of the first anniversary of this newsletter, we’ve assembled the last year’s worth of locations one place. If you’d like to receive our newsletters and press releases, please sign up here. We also archive all previous newsletters on our website.


Bellingham, August 2013


Lake reflecting the mountains. Photo courtesy of Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism.

Bellingham – Mt. Baker dominates the eastern horizon, with a stair step of fertile valleys, foothills, placid lakes and rivers that vacillate seasonally between docile and irate. Bellingham balances small town spirit with funky college-infusion, artist chic and culinary wow. Read More…