Donald Zuckerman, Director of the Colorado Film Commission, has been gathering support from politicians and local business leaders. Apparently it paid off, as two congressmen talked about supporting film and media productions on the “Colorado Matters” radio show.
Republican House Speaker, Frank McNulty, only gave a lukewarm response when asked if he would support programs to bolster the state’s production activity. On the upside, Colorado Senate President, Brandon Shaffer, said “Yes, I think that they’re good ideas – they’ve been well vetted and I think they will create jobs in our state, so absolutely, I’ll support them.”
Hickenlooper gave some specifics on his plans to attract more film productions to Colorado. He proposed: “$3 million for a revolving loan fund to provide low-risk gap financing so Colorado can compete with other states for film, video gaming and electronic media productions.”
So what is a “revolving loan fund?” It’s an initial fund (the $3 Million) that can be loaned out to small business development projects (film productions), and that will be repaid by each project to replenish the loan fund, and thus used to fund new projects. Hickenlooper used the term “low risk gap financing” as well, which implies a loan that must be repaid.
With Banks, which rarely provide film financing on large scales, they occasionally give low-risk gap financing. As Columbia Film Professor and author Reed Martin notes in his comprehensive book, “The Reel Truth,” “(bank loans for films) are involved only insofar as lending against contracts where distributors agree to pay producers upon delivery of the movie, but that’s only at the very last stage in the financing.”
I won’t pretend to sit here and know what this means if it’s a State government, and not a bank that is loaning the money. All I can decipher is that the state film office wants to provide some form of low-risk financing to film and media productions that must be repaid so the fund stays plentiful for new productions.