Can Independent Filmmakers Save The Michigan Movie Industry?

I know a guy, who after he lost his job in a Michigan factory, sustained his family by working as an extra in the local film industry. Sometimes, Frank worked on more than one set at a time.

No more.

The Michigan incentives ran out after the filming of Transformers 5, which wraps this summer after receiving $21 million in benefits and employing more than 700 extras. Today, if you’re in Michigan looking for extra work, go to Georgia or Kentucky. Or, LA.

Enter Ted Houser, a Michigan filmmaker and founding member of The Detroit Film Society, an organization dedicated to streamlining resources for and to filmmakers. “I don’t think it’s impossible  to make independent films in Michigan in the current climate,” Houser told me.

“Independent film,” Houser said, “doesn’t demand the production crews that big money pictures require. Indies ought to thrive in spite of the disappearing state incentives. It doesn’t require huge amounts of people to make an independent film. And, that’s what The Detroit Film Society is here for.”

The Detroit Film Society Thursday is introducing itself at a launch party at Cinema Detroit, the city’s only seven-day-a-week movie theater. All the film industry is invited. “We’re excited to have Cinema Detroit as the official venue partner for filmmakers,”said Houser. “They showcase real independent films,often giving opportunities for up and coming filmmakers to bring their work to a wider audience.”

The Detroit Film Society Launch Party
Cinema Detroit
4126 Third Street
Detroit 48201
7PM, Thursday, August 18
Come one, come all

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