While Washington Filmworks lobbies to renew the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program, a 2011 feature film from that very program is charming critics and audiences at Sundance 2012. Shot in Washington last spring, Safety Not Guaranteed is the story of a magazine intern investigating a mysterious classified ad that seeks a time travel companion. The Hollywood Reporter called this funny movie with a compelling theme “a big win for everyone involved.”
Safety Not Guaranteed is undoubtedly a big win for Washington. Each time someone watches this movie they’ll see “made in Washington” at the end of the credits along with a Washington Filmworks logo. Films shot in Washington represent highly valuable screen time for our state, especially in light of the fact that the legislature cut funding for the state tourism office during the 2011 legislative session.
Producer Stephanie Langhoff had fantastic things to say about filming Safety Not Guaranteed here. “I can’t speak highly enough of my experience shooting in Washington state. The incentive was the main draw initially and then when I met and worked with our crew, I have to say that would be an equal draw in the future. Our cast and crew consisted almost entirely of locals and they couldn’t have been more capable, professional, or kind. The locations were perfect and the hotels, restaurants and the city of Seattle in general were joys to experience.”
Langhoff’s words illustrate a scenario we hear time and again. The Motion Picture Competitiveness Program is the initial hook that brings a production to Washington, but it is the experience of filming here that brings producers back. Both parts of this equation are vital to a producer’s decision making process.
If you were a cast or crew member on Safety Not Guaranteed and support the renewal of the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program, please write your legislators. Tell them about the success of this project. Let them know that the incentive was an essential part of bringing this production to Washington and keeping you employed.
Get informed. Get involved. Get renewed.