With a record number of film and tv productions last year, the film industry in Shasta County is booming.
The Shasta County Film Commission reported a big boost in film and TV productions in the area last year with a record 24 productions, that's up from just five in 2016.
Last year alone, Shasta County saw about $680,000 of economic impact from film productions.
They say that's in part because the area is growing as a desirable location for filmmakers looking for vast outdoor spaces and natural landscapes.
But it's also the diversity of the landscape attracts many to the area.
“Our beautiful outdoors are definitely our draw,” Shasta County Film Commissioner Sabrina Jursich said. “The lack of traffic that we have, so they can get from one amazing location to another very quickly. And then also our location fees are much less expensive generally speaking than in The Zone which is like San Francisco or Los Angeles.”
Local filmmaker Rene Perez makes horror and action movies for the home video market.
He says the North State has just about every landscape imaginable except for the ocean.
“You can have a waterfall, volcanoes, have a city, a small town, an urban-looking town,” Perez said. “You basically have most of everything compared to any other places I've been to.”
And even though Perez has shot overseas and all over the U.S., he says he likes to keep his productions local as much as possible.
“Basically, I don't like to leave the area,” Perez said. “I like filming around here. So all the money that I'm given to make the movies and spend on hotels and gas and everything that we need to get, I do that here.”
Perez estimates his last few films have contributed about $300,000 to the local economy.
Last year the film commission launched a local incentive program to encourage more filmmakers like Perez to film in Shasta County.
And even though the incentive program is geared towards smaller productions, there have been some big name movies shot in the area.
Probably Shasta County’s biggest claim to fame would be the 1996 Rob Reiner movie Stand by Me shot near Burney.
“The famous railroad scene in Stand By Me, so yeah, that's one of our most notable films,” Jursich said.
She says Burney Falls is one of the most popular filming locations in the area, not only because it's beautiful, but also because it's easy to access and easy to get a permit to film there.
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