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ShowBiz Expo racks up exhibitors

A RECORD NUMBER of film commissions, location services and facility operators are inked as exhibitors for the third annual ShowBiz Expo East, skedded for Jan. 6-8 at the New York Hilton & Towers.

Both the obvious and the unusual are among the exhibitors, including the Arkansas Motion Picture Office, the Connecticut Film Commission, the Missouri Film Office, the Bahamas Film Commission and services providers NBA Entertainment Inc., NBC and Times Square Studios. Forty of the show’s 165 exhibitors are from the film commissions/services sector.

ShowBiz Expo said it anticipates 10,000 attendees at this year’s show, and 225 exhibitors are expected to have committed by the time the convention arrives in January.

For information, call (213) 668-1811 or, outside California, call toll-free, (800) 366-6392.

SO WHERE DO YOU find a script supervisor in Stewart, Miss.? If you had a copy of the Mississippi Film Office’s new 188-page Location & Film Guide, you’d know that Bettye Mitchell McKeller, who has worked on “Scarecrow and Mrs. King,””Lou Grant” and “Battlestar Galactica,” can be flagged down in Stewart on Route 1 at P.O. Box 186.

The book contains loads of other information on the state, which proudly calls itself “the cradle of the blues.” In fact, this is one of the sharpest film guide efforts we’ve seen from a state in quite a while.

To get a copy of the guide, call Christy Lindsay at (601) 359-6564 or write the Mississippi Film Office at P.O. Box 849, Jackson, Miss. 39205.

KUDOS TO MIAMI-BASED Cine Video Tech Inc., which is celebrating its 25th year in the business. The company started as a small storefront shop in Miami, which often rented out its single camera with the cinematographer attached — company founder Egon Stephan.

These days, Cine Video is well known among marlin country filmmakers for an inventory that includes Arriflex 535 cameras, Moviecam Compact Cameras, HMA and Incandescent Lighting Fixtures and grip equipment.

DEVELOPMENT EXECS, take note. The comic industry has a new interloper in Philadelphia with the announcement that Blackball Comics will release its first slate of titles in March. Such fledgling comic companies as Malibu Comics draw a great deal of their revenue from movie development, so it’ll be of interest to see whether the artists from Philly will be able to cash in, too.

IN OKLAHOMA, the state film office has announced that reality television has returned to the Sooner State with crews from “Rescue 911” and “Unsolved Mysteries” shooting during the month of November.

In tapings coordinated by the Oklahoma Film Office, “Unsolved Mysteries” is in Oklahoma City to shoot an episode about an Arizona woman who discovered at the age of 52 that she was adopted and the discoveries she made searching for her birth mother, while “Rescue 911” is in Tulsa to tape an episode on the death of 15-year-old Brad Kaye. The teenager died as a result of “butane huffing,” which is the practice of inhaling the organic solvents used to make aerosol sprays and petroleum products.

THIS WEEK IN Mexico, the Sundance Film Festival and the University of Guadalajara are teaming on the first Mexican Screenwriter’s Lab. Among U.S. participants in the program are Sundance mucky-mucks Kit Carson, Matthew Robbins and Nelson George.

This isn’t the first south-of-the-border effort for Sundance. The organization partnered with the Mexican government and IMCINE to conduct a producer’s conference in Toluca, Mexico, earlier this year.

UNION NEGOTIATIONS forced the California Film Commission to move Friday’s meeting from its regular location at the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers office to NBC Studios in Burbank, but take heart.

The new venue is better suited for the scheduled seminar to be given by the California State Fire Marshal’s special effects & stunt safety seminar. At the conclusion of the meeting, board members will be given a special effects demonstration.

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