The Colorado Office of Film, Television, and Media estimates that film production has generated more than $150 million in economic impact statewide since 2012. The Teller County Film Commission, a newly formed non-profit, says it wants to bring more of that money to the county.
Executive director Mike Perini says the commission hopes to reach producers looking for the kinds of scenery Teller County has to offer.
"We’re on the back door of Pikes Peak," he explains. "We’ve got incredible western towns with Cripple Creek and Victor, and just all of those things that would be ideal for any kind of movie, whether historical or current-day."
The commission is designed to serve as a first point of contact for film crews, and to assist with location scouting, permitting, and other aspects of the production process. Their work is already bearing fruit, says Perini, with a "major network" set to begin filming on a project this month, and several others having expressed interest.
Even without an organization to court and facilitate film production in the area, the Teller County Film Commission estimates that the county has seen nearly half a million dollars in economic impact from the industry over the years. With the new commission now in place, Perini says he thinks it's possible to double that number within the next 12 months.
As for how that money is generated, Perini explains that when film crews come to town, "they have needs to eat, to sleep, to hire locals to help be on the film or behind the film. They may need a set constructed, so they reach out to the hardware stores [...] things like that."
The Teller County Film Commission -- which received seed funding to the tune of $2500 from the state film office -- also plans to host a film festival in the area. Perini says he expects the inaugural 'City Above the Clouds Film Festival' to take place in 2018.