Second year of Louisiana Film Prize brings in more money - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Second year of Louisiana Film Prize brings in more money

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The Shreveport-Bossier area ramps up for its largest film festival this weekend: the Louisiana Film Prize.

It's the second year for the short film contest. Last October, three young men from the Shreveport area won the top prize at the inaugural contest.

"We've always wanted to do a short film," Noah Scruggs, one of the 2012 La Film Prize winners. "We've always done little, goofy skits. The film festival came around and kind of gave us the opportunity to take it to the next level."

But festival executive director Gregory Kallenberg said the area won too—financially.

"Last year we did about $2.1 million in economic impact just on the production side," said Kallenberg. "And what that is the side when they're come to shoot the films. We did $2.1 million in economic impact."

The festival itself also brought money in with 1,500 in attendance; some staying in hotels and eating in restaurants. The 2013 numbers are already bigger. Kallenberg said the production side where entrants must shoot their films in Shreveport- Bossier brought in between $2.7 million and $2.8 million.

The number of registered film crews remained about the same, 84 last year and 86 this year, but 70 percent of this year's entries came from outside the area, says Kallenberg. It's the exact opposite from last year.

"We had four teams from Los Angeles, teams from Dallas, teams from Atlanta, teams from New York come in and… hired our crew, rented their gear, stayed in our hotels, and we saw a huge bump in our economic impact number on the production side of the equation."

The impact from the festival is expected to be even greater this year. The Hilton as well as the Remington Hotel is already sold out for the weekend. But Kallenberg said the key to making this festival grow is more than just having additional people show up for the shows.

"When we show them a good time during this festival weekend, they go home to the Dallas, Texas of the world, the Austin, Texas of the world or the Los Angeles of the world, once they go back there they spread our gospel for us," said Kallenberg. "I guarantee we're just going to keep growing in those communities."

The Louisiana Film Prize kicked off last night with an opening party. The film screenings start Friday at 2pm and run until late Saturday. The winner will be announced Sunday morning during a special brunch for the film makers and VIPs. We'll announce who takes home the top prize later that afternoon on KTBS at 5pm. 

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