Already the global screen production industry contributes $2.2 billion to Auckland’s economy with over 1440 production and post-production businesses. Recent productions made in Auckland include Warner Bros’ 3D version of Yogi Bear, Ice, Tracker, The Hopes and Dreams of Gazza Snell; Disney telemovie Avalon High, Power Rangers, and the U.S. TV series Spartacus: Blood and Sand. Now Auckland City Council has released a new protocol — i.e. code of conduct — to “make filming in Auckland even easier and more attractive to international and local producers. Auckland City Council developed this protocol in close consultation with Film Auckland and industry practitioners. The protocol is designed to be easily followed and simplifies the consent process. It will enable quicker turnaround times with all decisions made transparently.” More and more, it seems that California doesn’t stand a chance to keep filmmaking here at home.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) announced the launch Wednesday of “Operation In Our Sites,” a new initiative aimed at Internet counterfeiting and piracy. In the first action carried out as part of the initiative, authorities seized nine domain names of Web sites that were offering first-run movies, often within hours of their theatrical release. Seven of those sites were targeted for seizure by the SDNY.