FILM AND VIDEO GAME INDUSTRY: THE POWER ON CONFERENCE RECAP
On November 18th, 2014, the “Power On” Conference, a Film, Interactive and Tourism event featuring state filmmakers, video game makers, and other people involved in the moving image industry took place. Panelists from all over the state met to discuss how to bring film tourism to local communities, the state of interactive industries in Texas, and other subjects relevant to our area. On the same evening, a screening occurred of the movie “All She Can,” a film made and set in South Texas. We hope that we can get ideas on how to further promote and establish South Texas as a top destination for the moving image industry and the video game industry.
The conference began with an introduction by myself and Dr. Mark Escamilla. The first panel consisted of individuals from the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau and a tourism coordinator from Bastrop County, with recommendations on how to build film tourism in our area. Bastrop and Austin have hosted many film projects, including “True Grit,” “Transformers 4,” “Boyhood” and other great movies. Next, the group heard from the video game industry, which is a booming industry in Texas. The Entertainment Software Association found that the video games industry contributed over $760 million to the Texas economy, with 127 video game makers in 2012 (compared to 80 in 2009). With a young, computer-savvy generation and workforce in our area, there is ample opportunity for video and computer game establishments to set up shop in the Coastal Bend area.
Also, the developers of “All She Can” (set and shot in our area), discussed the aspects of shooting in the Coastal Bend, including their inspiration for the material and the South Texas setting. We hope that the discussion of this film can inspire others to recognize the benefits of filming in Corpus Christi, Port Aransas, and other surrounding areas. The industry aspect could bring real economic opportunities to our area. A study by the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Texas at Austin analyzed former film incentive successes in the state, and with that analysis projected expectations for the next 4 years. Assuming that $32 million was spent per biennium ($16 million/year), the state would enjoy $1.17 billion in output (including direct and indirect impacts) and 12,500 jobs over five years.
As a reminder, the 84th Texas Legislative session is fast approaching and will be back in session in January of 2015. As always, I want to hear your ideas and suggestions as we get closer the start of next session. These ideas and information are important forms of feedback and I hope that you will not hesitate to contact my office.
If you have questions regarding any of the information mentioned in this week’s article, please do not hesitate to call my Capitol or District Office. Please always feel free to contact my office if you have any questions or issues regarding a Texas state agency, or if you would like to contact my office regarding constituent services. As always, my offices are available at any time to assist with questions, concerns or comments (Capitol Office, 512-463-0672; District Office, 361-949-4603).
– State Representative Todd Hunter, District 32
Rep. Hunter represents Nueces County (Part). He can be contacted at email@example.com or at 512-463-0672.