FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 11, 2007
MAYOR BLOOMBERG PRESENTS SECOND ANNUAL "MADE IN NY" AWARDS
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today presented the second annual "Made in NY" awards to six individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to the City's entertainment industry at a ceremony in Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Terminal. Actress and producer Tina Fey of NBC's "30 Rock," commercial director Kevin Breslin, HDNet co-founders Joana Vicente and Jason Kliot and The New Victory Theater were honored during the ceremony. In addition, as part of the ongoing efforts of the Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting (MOFTB) to increase diversity in the entertainment industry, the Mayor presented the inaugural Diversity Award to Black Filmmaker Foundation President Warrington Hudlin. The award was developed to honor one person every year who has made significant contributions to increase diversity in the local entertainment industry. The Mayor was joined by Film, Theatre and Broadcasting Commissioner Katherine Oliver.
"Tonight's honorees represent the City's surging entertainment industry," said Mayor Bloomberg. "The excellence of our distinguished honorees is a testament to the City's vast pool of talent, which increasingly chooses to shoot films, television shows and commercials in New York thanks to our 'Made in NY' incentive program. I applaud these 'Made in NY' honorees for their contributions to our local film, television, commercial and theatre industry."
"We truly appreciate all of the successful work our guests of honor have contributed to the City," said Commissioner Oliver. "Their extraordinary efforts have helped to build the 'Made in NY' program, which has recently yielded seven new prime-time shows that will bring thousands of new jobs and help continue to grow our economy in all five boroughs. This distinguished group of individuals is part of a local industry that continues to make New York City the entertainment capital of the world."
Since 2002, MOFTB has pioneered numerous programs to support our local entertainment industry and connect New Yorkers to the jobs and revenue it generates - including the "Made in NY" program, which offers tax credits and marketing assistance to productions that complete at least 75% of their work in New York City. The City estimates that film, television, commercial and music video industry employs 100,000 New Yorkers and contributes $5 billion to the City's economy annually. In 2006, the City of New York hosted the highest number of film, television, commercial and music video shoots ever. Last year, MOFTB assisted with 34,718 shoot days, a 10% increase over 2005, when the introduction of "Made in NY" helped set a then-record 31,578 shoot days in the City.
Last year, the City created a Diversity Task Force of industry professionals, CEOs and City officials charged with creating initiatives to include more women and people of color in the local entertainment industry. MOFTB has also hosted a series of panels of industry leaders and celebrities to promote the importance of the industry and career opportunities in theatre, film and television. So far this year, MOFTB has held educational panels at the Apollo, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Museum of Moving Image in Queens, and the Summer Play Festival.
In 2006, the Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting partnered with Brooklyn Workforce Innovations to launch the "Made in NY" Production Assistant Training Program, a series of free, full-time, month-long programs which prepare New Yorkers for jobs as production assistants and offer them job placements and connections within the field. The program is intended to connect a diverse group of New Yorkers with the new job opportunities that have been created by the "Made in NY" incentive program and teach crew members how to work collaboratively with the neighborhoods in which they shoot. More than 70 PAs from every borough have been trained and certified through the program. Since the program began in March 2006, "Made in NY" PAs have worked more than 5,000 days on productions in the City.
In addition, the City and the Motion Picture Association of America launched an anti-piracy campaign to thwart the illegal camcording and selling of pirated movies. The City's three-pronged approach to combating piracy includes tougher legislation, stepped-up enforcement and increased public awareness.
The "Made in NY" Awards ceremony was held inside Vanderbilt Hall where Turner Classic Movies (TCM) and Time Warner Cable are displaying the exhibit "Celluloid Skyline: New York and the Movies." Celluloid Skyline, a free, four-week exhibit based on James Sanders' award-winning book of the same name, combines immense urban views with digitally projected film clips and dramatic enlargements of more than 160 rare and unusual production photographs. The imaginative displays capture the epic relationship between the real New York and its cinematic portrayal over the decades. The current CELLULOID exhibit will run through June and will be shown on TCM and TCM On Demand throughout the month. The Akua Dixon String Quartet, representing the Associate Musicians of Greater New York Local 802, playing music from New York-themed films during the ceremony.
"Made in NY" Honorees
Breslin, who filmed the "Made in NY" campaign along with producers Jason Goldman and Ko Niizuma, is a director with Maysles Films in New York. In addition to filming "Heartbreakers" for the Oxygen Network, Breslin's recent commercials include The Boys and Girls Club of America with Bill Clinton, the Chevy Silverado "This is Our Country" campaign, IBM, Hellmann's Mayonnaise, Mercedes-Benz, and the Hard Rock Brand.
Tina Fey writes, executive-produces and stars as Liz Lemon in NBC's "30 Rock," currently in pre-production for a second season on NBC. Prior to creating "30 Rock," Fey completed six seasons as head writer, cast member and co-anchor of the "Weekend Update" segment on NBC's "Saturday Night Live."
Fey won an Emmy and two Writers Guild Awards for her writing on "Saturday Night Live." Fey has also won much acclaim for her acting, including being named one of Entertainment Weekly's Entertainers of the Year, one of People Magazine's Most Beautiful People, and one of Time Magazine's prestigious Time 100. She expanded to feature films in 2004, as both a screenwriter and an actress opposite Lindsay Lohan in the hit comedy "Mean Girls," garnering her a nomination for a Writers Guild Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. Currently, she is set to star in the upcoming Universal movie "Baby Mama," being filmed in New York City. She now lives in New York with her husband Jeff Richmond and their daughter.
Warrington Hudlin is one of the founders of the Black Filmmaker Foundation (BFF), a not-for-profit organization that has played a pivotal role in the emergence of the contemporary black film movement. Hudlin is also a founding member of the Media Coalition of Artist of Color, which organizes a monthly networking meeting in New York City to connect film and TV executives from major media companies with media arts organizations that serve communities of color.
For the last ten years, with the generous support of HBO, Hudlin has organized the BFF Summit, where the top 100 most influential African Americans, Asians, and Latinos meet the leaders of the film and television industry in a closed-door industry retreat. Hudlin created the BFF Lab, which became the model for similar labs that Hudlin designed and administered as part of diversity initiatives at MTV Networks. Hudlin is a member of the Nielsen Media Research African American Advisory Council and serves on the NYC Task Force on Diversity in Film, Television, and Commercial Production.
Jason Kliot and Joana Vicente are Co-Presidents of HDNet Films, Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner's newly formed high-definition production company that produces features and documentaries, shot with High Definition digital cameras. HDNet work is distributed worldwide through Magnolia Pictures, Landmark Theaters, HDNet Movies, Magnolia Home Entertainment and HDNet Films International. With HDNet Films, Kliot and Vicente are in various stages of production with 20 films. Kliot and Vincente also co-founded the production company Open City Films 12 years ago.
Kliot is a prominent leader in the New York film industry, having produced over 30 films. Kliot is also an award winning director of short films, music videos and public service announcements. Jason was nominated for an Academy Award this year for his film "Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room." Vicente has also produced over 30 films by acclaimed directors including Jim Jarmusch, Miguel Arteta, Hal Hartley, Steven Soderbergh, Nicole Holofcener and Todd Solondz. Vicente is on the Board of Directors of the Independent Feature Project and Chair of the Gotham Awards Committee.
The New Victory Theater was re-dedicated in 1995 as New York's oldest active theater -marking a new era for 42nd Street in Times Square. Built for the legitimate theater in 1900 by Oscar Hammerstein as the "Theatre Republic," it helped establish 42nd Street as the city's new theater district. In his own words, Hammerstein described it as the "perfect parlor theater...a drawing room of the drama dedicated to all that is best in dramatic and lyric art."
Cora Cahan accepted the award on behalf of The New Victory Theater. In 1990, Cahan became President of The New 42nd Street, a non-profit organization established by New York State and New York City charged with restoring and finding appropriate uses for seven neglected historic theaters on the block between Broadway and Eighth Avenue. Cahan serves on the Boards of the Seventh Regiment Armory Conservancy, the Times Square Alliance, and the Center for Architecture Foundation. She is also Founder and Trustee Emeritus of both the Joyce Theater and Eliot Feld's Ballet Tech.
Stu Loeser/Matthew Kelly (212) 788-2958
Julianne Cho/Kwame Patterson (Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting)