Local Films Bring Local Business Despite Tight Funding

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COLUMBIA - Local filmmaker Brian Maurer said Wednesday he is optimistic about the preview of his film, "The Pardoners," September 17 at Rag Tag Cinema. Maurer has been in the local film business for eight years and has worked on a handful of projects in that time.

After the closing of the Missouri Film Office in late June, funds for Missouri filmmakers have been tight. The Missouri Film Office helped filmmakers--local and national--find shooting locations, find equipment and get permits. Maurer said without the help of the Missouri Film Office and with a government cut of $175,000 in annual funding, filmmakers in Missouri are left to fend for themselves.

Maurer said he was able to get the help he needed from local businesses such as COSMOS Storage, America's Best Value Inn, and The Broadway Diner. Owner of Broadway Diner, Ed Johnson, said he is a big advocate of local filmmakers and wish more would take initiative. Johnson said local filmmakers like Maurer are also helping to stimulate the economy by using local sites and hiring local help.

Johnson said the Broadway Diner is as busy as ever, and having the new film shot there has brought even more helpful business in tough times. He said the people working on the film come in and bring their families, keeping booths in the diner full.

Maurer said he hopes filmmakers in Missouri start working harder to keep the Missouri film tradition alive, and try to break back into the forefront of the national film industry. He said Missouri has so much to offer visually and economically for film makers, and hopes people start to take notice.

For more information on Maurer's "The Pardoners" go to http://vimeo.com/28044951