Front Row Center Newsletter from the Greater Columbus Arts Counsil
The Columbus Film Industry Gets Ready for Its Closeup!
By Jennifer Sadler

Making Columbus a Film-Friendly City

Columbus is getting ready for its close-up!  As more and more cities across the globe are looking to capitalize on the flow of film, television and media business away from Hollywood, Columbus is working to position itself as a nationally-recognized film-friendly location.  With the Ohio Motion Picture Tax Credit that began in 2009 and recent funding to strengthen the role of the Greater Columbus Film Commission (Film Columbus), the city is making incremental changes that will allow us to showcase the unique qualities and talents our city possesses that make us an attractive destination for film producers.

It’s no secret that film production companies drop a lot of money in a short period of time in any community in which they are shooting and this is extremely profitable to local merchants and professionals.   Have you ever been to the cinema and sat through the credits and wondered over the sheer number of people and businesses it took to make the movie?  Typically, the vast majority of the work on productions is done by locals.

When a movie shoot comes to town, they don’t bring much; they bring what the film industry calls the “above the line,” or key players such as the directors, the producers; the people who are setting the creative vision. Most professional crew members “below the line” are hired locally because of the convenience and to save the productions money.

Film, television and media productions can have a strong economic impact on state and local communities by providing high-paying jobs for crew, actors and support staff. The scope of production activity is broad, resulting in substantial expenditures with local businesses as goods and services are purchased like  hotels, restaurants, property rentals, art supply stores, lumber and paint companies, equipment and party rental stores, costume shops, thrift shops, fabric stores, sign shops, car rental companies, coffee shops and carry-outs–and too many more to list.



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Riffe Gallery Celebrates Photography: Back to the Future Artist Profile
Vidas Barzdukas Headshot Local Writer
Vidas Barzdukas

chats with GCAC about the Mid-Ohio Filmmakers’ Association

By Jennifer Sadler

As the most comprehensive online events guide and resource for arts and culture in central Ohio, offers a virtual guide through the Columbus art world with a searchable database of events, concerts, performances and more. is an engaging place for artists and arts organizations to share what they do, with thousands of users per month. The Artist Directory allows visual, performing and literary artists to create a profile and portfolio to showcase their work—for free—and enables art enthusiasts to easily search for and connect with them. Our monthly artist profile series features interviews with some of the many talented individuals who make up central Ohio’s thriving creative community.

To get an insight into the local filmmaking industry, GCAC recently interviewed Vidas Barzdukas, vice president of MOFA, or the Mid-Ohio Filmmaker’s Association.  Vidas currently works as a writer and editor specializing in educational publishing, magazine publishing, television and film.  He also works as a writer for the sci-fi web series Aidan 5 (, which has been nominated for several IAWTV (International Academy of Web Television) Awards in Las Vegas, NV

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Sneak Peek

MadLab Theatre Presents Today's the Day: A Tribute to Chris Lane

This past April, MadLab lost one of its most original leaders when Chris Lane passed away. In honor of Chris—the actor, director, improviser, rockstar, teacher and friend—MadLab will perform a show written by Lane himself. The evenings’ performances will include The Washroom Trilogy, Spree and Awesome Possum and the Preacher Who Lost His Pants. Each night will also feature some of the best improv troupes in town, such as FFN, Bacon and State of Play—all of which were influenced by Lane.

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CATCO Presents the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is a Tony Award-winning musical comedy, highlighting the angst of six adolescent overachievers who learn some of life’s most important lessons while competing for the spelling championship of a lifetime. Winning isn’t everything and losing doesn’t necessarily make you a loser.

Critics love The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. “It’s spelled W-O-N-D-E-R-F-U-L,” says The Wall Street Journal.

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Columbus Idea Foundry presents the Columbus Mini Maker Faire

The Columbus Idea Foundry is gearing up for its second annual Columbus Mini Maker Faire. Mini Maker Faires are regional events modeled after the World Maker Faire in New York. It is a family-friendly celebration of science, technology, innovation, and the Maker movement.Special features of the 2013 Columbus Mini Maker Faire will include a special kids’ area with hands-on projects, an area dedicated to entrepreneurs, live demos, make-and-take stations, special guest speakers and the always-anticipated Ohio Power Tool Drag Racing Championship.

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GCAC appreciates and acknowledges support from: City of Columbus, Franklin County and the Ohio Arts Council.

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Front Row Center provides an in-depth look into the creative individuals and organizations that make the Central Ohio arts and cultural community unique. Front Row Center features articles about local and national arts issues, profiles of creative professionals, previews of upcoming events and the inside scoop on what’s happening in the arts in Columbus. For complete submission guidelines please visit our Publications Page.