Los Angeles, California – October 29, 2012 – What started 18 years ago with the seed of a singular idea for an awards event became a pivotal moment and sparked a movement to focus long needed recognition on the previously unsung world of film and television location professionals who play a vital role in the production industry.
From that one idea from the vision of Sheri Davis, director of the Inland Empire Film Commission, grew the California On Location Awards (COLA), a premier awards program saluting location managers and production companies for exemplary professional excellence while filming on location In California. In addition federal, state and local public employees are recognized for their valuable services in going above and beyond to facilitate California location filming in their jurisdictions.
The tradition of the COLA program recognizing and supporting excellence continued on Sunday, October 28 as the 18th annual COLA reception and ceremony was hosted by the Huntington-Langham of Pasadena amid the grace and elegance reminiscent of the Golden Age of Hollywood captured by that historic hotel. There over 500 entertainment industry executives, producers, directors, location managers and other production professionals gathered along with community leaders to celebrate this state’s signature industry and salute the location professionals who help make it work. Popular veteran actor Lorenzo Lamas guided the show as master of ceremonies.
COLA is the signature and flagship annual event of the Film Liaisons In California Statewide (FLICS), a non-profit organization focused on promoting and supporting California’s film and television production industry. The FLICS membership consists of regional film commissions throughout the state each of which offer local expertise to assist film and T.V. projects with a multitude of elements required by productions.
The annual COLA ceremony saw four awards presented to individual location managers as location professional of the year for outstanding work in the categories of television commercials, episodic T.V., studio feature films and independent features. Scott Allen Logan received the award for his commercial work on “Gymkhana 5” which involved precision high speed driving on the streets of San Francisco. The episodic television award went to Gregory Alpert for “Luck,” an HBO series about the world of horse racing and Chris Baugh received the COLA in studio features for his location management work on the Warner Bros. film “Argo” about the CIA extraction of American diplomatic personnel out of revolutionary Iran filmed in California. In the category of independent features location manager Caleb Duffy was recognized for “Hitchcock,” a 1959 Fox Searchlight Pictures period film shot in modern day Los Angeles and Ventura Counties involving a love story between legendary filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock and his wife during the filming of “Psycho.”
Assistant location managers make very important contributions to the location filming process. The Assistant Location Manager of the Year award in episodic T.V. went to Eva Schroeder for her work on “The Client List,” a Lifetime Television series. Keomanee Vilaythong took home the COLA as Assistant Location Manager of the Year in feature films for “The Dark Knight Rises,” another in the Warner Bros.’ Batman series.
Due to the collaborative effort involved by the entire location department in the success of a complex production COLA presents awards to location teams of the year in the categories of episodic television, studio feature films and independent features. The Location Team of the Year award in episodic television went to the Warner Bros. Entertainment – John Wells Production “Southland:Sunset” with Michael Haro as associate producer and Location Manager Alison Taylor. For studio feature films the Location Team of the Year nod was given to the location department behind Paramount Pictures’ “Star Trek into Darkness” headed by Supervising Location Manager Becky Brake. The COLA for Location Team of the Year for Independent Features was presented to the location department of the Dogwood Pictures production “Knight of Cups” led by Location Managers David Lyons and Kei Rowan-Young.
In recognition of exhibiting the highest professional standards while filming in California’s communities the Production Company of the Year award went to the reality television show “The Amazing Race” by CBS Productions with Deven Chierghino as location manager.
California’s film and television production industry often engages the valuable services and expertise of many departments within various governmental sectors in the state. The California On Location Awards recognizes individual government employees for outstanding service in partnering with California’s entertainment industry and going the extra mile in facilitating diverse productions filming on location. Awards are presented in the categories of city, county, state and federal Public Employees of the Year. Receiving the city employee award was Tehachapi City Manager Greg Garrett while the county recognition when to Tony Martinez of the Kern County Fire Department. In the category of state employee the COLA was awarded to John O’Rourke of Humbolt-Redwood State Park with the federal employee recognition going to Guy Langham of the United States Coast Guard.
This year recognition was paid to Rajan Shandil the COLA show producer and director for the last 14 years. Also recognized was John Brown of the live show production company The Show Pros for his 13 years in providing the creative and technical production expertise behind COLA.
For 2013 the 19th annual California On Location Awards will return to the Beverly Hilton, legendary home of the Golden Globes, by special invitation from that hotel’s management.
For further information please contact:
Sheri Davis, COLA Chair Emeritus
Director of the Inland Empire Film Commission.
McMillan Production Services
Director of Media Relations for the Film Liaisons In California Statewide (FLICS)