While making RISING STAR will be a huge creative effort, the making of this movie will help the state of Connecticut in a number of ways as well. This film will help our state in furthering the growth of a new industry, help educate the next generation of workers in that industry, and increase tourism in the state.
One of the biggest reasons this movie is even in the development stage is because of the state of Connecticut’s desire to bring the film industry within its borders. Connecticut has a tax incentive program for movies, TV shows and digital media projects, which allows for a 10% tax credit on projects that cost more than $100,000, and up to a 30% tax credit on projects that cost over $1 million. This has led to an explosion of production in Connecticut since 2006, the year the credits took effect. (You can learn more about Connecticut’s tax credits at the Connecticut Film Office Web site.)
As a result of all this production coming into Connecticut, it became apparent that a workforce would need to be created, one that would be able to support the films and TV shows coming into the state. That led to the creation of the Connecticut Film Industry Training Program (FITP), a state-sponsored workforce development program that brings in film and TV professionals to work as instructors, teaching state residents how to work as crew members on the films and TV shows that shoot in state.
As part of our effort to continue the education of this workforce, RISING STAR has committed to using graduates of the FITP in all the positions the program trains people for. This will allow the movie to be made with the best and brightest of Connecticut’s young film talent, and allow them to continue to gain experience, so they will become more qualified to work on the projects that will come into Connecticut in the future.
We also plan on using Hartford- and Connecticut-based vendors, whether for our equipment rentals, our food for the cast and crew, or the gas we use to fill up the cars and trucks we’ll be using during the production. This state patronage will benefit Connecticut businesses, and help grow our economy.
As the ABOUT page of this site says, RISING STAR is a movie about work. It will also be a movie that creates jobs.
One of the interesting aspects of RISING STAR is that it’s a movie that takes place completely in Hartford. We will be using Hartford locations, like the Mark Twain House, Harriet Beecher Stowe House, Connecticut Science Center, Bushnell Park, the grave of Hartford-based poet Wallace Stevens, and local bars, restaurants and coffee houses. Shooting a movie in these locations will help these cultural attractions and businesses, as the attention and press from the film shooting there will increase awareness, and in turn, increase patronage.
Once the film is finished, we plan to use the City of Hartford as an integral part of the distribution of RISING STAR as well. The Connecticut premiere will take place at the theater of the Connecticut Science Center, and this will be an event coordinated by the Connecticut Film Festival. The Festival will also bring the film around the state of Connecticut after its premiere, in a number of state cities and towns.
The hope is that after this tour, a distributor will take interest in the film and give it a theatrical, and later video and online, release. This will hopefully create a tourism effect similar to that of Mystic, Connecticut, after the release of the film MYSTIC PIZZA. Mystic has received a longtime boost in tourism as a result of MYSTIC PIZZA shooting in the town, as many vacationers make their way to the town to see the locations in the film, as well as to try out “the pizza that inspired the movie.”
Whether during production, at its premiere, or long after the film is done, RISING STAR will help in the generation of tourism dollars for the City of Hartford, and the state of Connecticut.