How locals can get a leg up in the growing Okanagan film industry

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OKANAGAN - With more and more Hollywood stars like Sir Anthony Hopkins and George Clooney descending on the Okanagan, you might be wondering how you can get in on the flourishing film scene. Luckily, there’s a class for that.

The Okanagan Film Commission is holding a symposium in March which will include workshops on film and television production, financing, script writing, directing, budgeting, distribution, pitching story ideas and entertainment law. The Motion Picture Industry Orientation Course, which is mandatory for most film labour organizations in B.C., will be offered twice over the weekend.

Film commissioner Jon Summerland says the course, which takes place March 3 and March 6, will help locals find their place in the industry.

“As the film and television production industry grows in the Okanagan, I get many requests each week with these questions," Summerland says in a media release.

The workshop will provide opportunities for participants to network and build relationships with industry VIPs and participants will get to pitch their films to real funders and producers, Summerland says.

The course isn’t free, but if money is an issue, check out this contest being put on by the Kelowna Film Society. Send a letter explaining who you are and why you want to attend the course, and you’ll be entered to win one of six bursaries. Winners will pay $50, and the film society will cover the rest. Even if you don’t win, you’ll receive $50 off the regular admission to the course. Letters can be emailed to camera@kelownafilm.com and the deadline to enter is Feb. 8 at 5 p.m.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at chelston@infonews.ca or call 250-309-5230. To contact the editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

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Editor’s note: • Watch shifts at the Vernon detachment have fallen to as low as three roadable officers. • The department suffers from chronic understaffing. • Sources, who we trust and who have knowledge of the s

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