A five-day competition debuting later this year will take its own approach to showcasing the state as a filmmaking destination. The Indiana Film Race, which is now accepting applications, involves three teams shooting a short film throughout five counties in west central Indiana. Participants will be given a $2,000 budget and will vie for a grand prize of $10,000. Joe Buser is the competition’s founder and the executive producer of Roachdale-based FILM 765 LLC. In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, he says Indiana continues to be overlooked by the film industry.
Buser says incentives for filmmakers, which the state does not offer, are a key. "We’re competing with other states that have huge tax incentives to attract filmmakers to come to their states and shoot, which is huge for economic development and economic prosperity," he says. "Developing (Indiana’s film industry) would have such an economic impact. I remember the three films that were (recently) shot here in Putnam County had a big impact, because they hire extra carpenters, they pay for food, they stay in hotels. Then there’s the whole process of what they call film tourism — the concept has been around for a little while, but it’s really starting to build — where tourists like to go and see where these films were shot, so that’s why it was a natural pairing to work with the visitors bureaus on this." The present-day — and potential future — exposure, Buser says, creates "another level of all that economic development."
The filming locations will be Brown, Monroe, Montgomery, Putnam and Tippecanoe and Buser says local tourism leaders have been very cooperative in locking in sites they’d like to promote and providing financial support for the project. In addition to the final products from the competitors, Buser says the local communities will be provided with footage shot during the process that can later be used as promotional materials and additional behind-the-scenes video will be created as "proof-of-concept" for future competitions and promotion of the Hoosier industry.
The Indiana Film Race will run from September 26-October 2 and crews will be on-location in each county traveling via recreational vehicles and using acting talent provided by the organization. You can connect to more about the competition by clicking here and FILM 765 by clicking here.
Indiana Film Race founder Joe Buser says incentives for filmmakers, which the state does not currently offer, are a key.