Though Oklahoma is not a bustling center for Hollywood filmmaking,
film and video professionals in the state are actually mak ing a
living in the commercial production industry, according to Mary Nell
Clark, coordinator of the Oklahoma Film Industry Task Force.
"We are looking at an alternative to the oil and gas and
agriculture industries," Clark said. "It's in its infancy, but people
are making a living in the film and video production industry."
"In four years time we have generated over $40 million in revenue
in the state of Oklahoma from the film and video industry.
"It's not just in the glamour - motion pictures - it's also
commercials, documentaries and movies for the home video market," she
Scenes from Oklahoma have been captured on the big screen in
several major films shot on location in addition to the
much-publicized ABC Movie of the Week, "Surviving."
"The Outsiders" and "Rumblefish," films directed by Francis Ford
Coppola and shot in Tulsa, contributed about $10.5 million in the
state, Clark said.
"A lot of states have higher numbers. I take money actually spent
- what was actually left in Oklahoma," she said.
Other major movies which have been partially or entirely shot in
Oklahoma include "Fandango" and Walt Disney's "Tex."
Clark said a couple of movies are lined up to be shot in Oklahoma.
"One I've been working on for almost two years. You have to be
very patient in this industry," Clark said. "We may have one-day
shoot soon. It's a CBS movie with Robert Mitchum."
Clark said portions of the television miniseries "The Blue and the
Gray" were filmed in Oklahoma, but the state did not receive much
New ventures in the film industry are also being explored within
the Sooner state. United Entertainment, a production company in
Tulsa, is a pioneer in movie production for the home video
cassettemarket. The company, owned by Bill Blair, has already
completed three low-budget horror flicks, "Blood Cult," "The Ripper,"
and "Tenkiller." At least one more will be shot before the end of the
When Blair launched his company, there was some speculation in the
industry as to whether a market existed for home videos, which are
priced at around $60. The first movie, "Blood Cult" was released
Sept. 30. Clark said that type of low-budget movie probably could
not be made profitably in California.
The film industry task force distributes an annual production
manual to large commercial production companies, advertising
agencies, and movie studios in major industry centers throughout the
country. The manual lists all Oklahoma companies and individuals
that provide services to the industry.
This year the Oklahoma Film and Tape Professionals Association
(OFTPA) is also distributing a state directory including more
descriptive information about each company or individual listed. …