12 Oct Tucson's Name in Lights - May 2003
Bob Shelton, in Old Tucson's zenith, had five movies and as many headliners working at a time. But these days, the films coming to Tucson for production are few and far between.
Most insiders say the failure of Old Tucson to rebuild its soundstage--and failure of the county to require that it be replaced after the fire--has hurt luring moving business. Eight years after the Old Tucson fire, Pima County officials are just beginning to ask that the sound stage be rebuilt.
Tucson Film officer director Shelli Hall's office, which has an annual budget of just under $200,000, is being shifted from City Hall to the Metropolitan Tucson Convention & Visitors Bureau. It will be out from under city bureaucracy and, practitioners and observers say, in a better fit with those who might not know the movie business--but whose job it is to market Tucson.
Hall is optimistic. Goldstein is willing to give it a chance, though he would like to see an independent film office set up as a nonprofit.
Shelton, the old pro, says money Tucson needs to spend does not have to be outlandish. It should be just enough for a Tucson representative to get to Los Angeles four to six times a year, and to host breakfasts, lunches or cocktail parties.