Movie Schedule

The City Council approves the Film Friendly Certified Community’s application

The town of Beaumont could soon be a certified filming location.

Beaumont City Council last month authorized City Manager Kenneth Williams to apply for the Film Friendly Certified Community program.

“The Film Friendly Texas program serves as an invaluable resource in helping position Beaumont as a premier media production destination,” Miles Haynes, assistant city manager/special projects, wrote in a memo to the council. “The Film Friendly Texas program provides an upscale platform for building relationships with community liaisons across the state who enjoy working with media industry professionals and are ready to jump right in when contacted about filming in their area.”

According to the Texas Film Commission, the Film Friendly Texas program, established in 2007, is a certification and marketing program.

“Through the film-friendly certification process, statewide communities are prepared to meet the opportunities and challenges of recording media productions and are ready to connect local businesses with production-related needs and services,” the commission notes.

Communities certified by Film Friendly Texas receive ongoing training and guidance on media industry standards, how to consider media production and best practices from the Texas Film Commission, according to the commission.

Application includes attending a Film Friendly Texas training workshop, passing administratively enforceable filming guidelines, and submitting photos from at least five Beaumont film locations.

The five Beaumont locations in the application include the Neches River, downtown Beaumont, Tyrrell Park, Cattail Marsh and the Tyrrell Historical Library.

“Through the Film Friendly Texas training and certification process, the City of Beaumont can better help align local businesses with production-related needs and create jobs for Texas-based crew members and residents,” Haynes said. “This is a unique opportunity to market the city through the Texas Film Commission.”

Haynes said the program provides local film producers with education and information about filming from the Texas Film Commission.

RELATED: Do you think of film producers when you think of Port Arthur?

“Texas media production industries stimulate local economies like Beaumont by creating jobs for Texas crews and residents and stimulating spending by local small businesses locally,” Haynes said. “This type of economic development includes but is not limited to: housing, food, transportation, site fees, lumber, building materials, local rents and more.

Williams said if Beaumont receives certification, it will be included in a list of Texas cities that are “film-friendly” and provide incentives for people to film in the community.

“Our next step after that is to meet with the (Beaumont Convention and Visitors Bureau) so we can have a point of contact,” Haynes said. “If someone wants to make a film in Beaumont, after certification they have a contact and we develop a permit sheet so they know what forms to fill out and what insurance to get.”

There are over 160 areas across the state that are registered as Film Friendly Certified Communities. Currently, Port Arthur is the only certified film-friendly community in Southeast Texas.

Although Port Arthur received its film-friendly certification in the fall of 2021, the city has yet to film anything through the certification.

“As Port Arthur’s liaison to Film Friendly Texas, I have enjoyed promoting the benefits of our area. Our area is rich in coastal landscapes as well as the industrial look that also tells the story of Texas,” said Darragh, experience manager for the Port Arthur Convention and Visitors Bureau told Castillo. “Our database on the website contains images that include Port Arthur’s Faith Trail and references to the Museum of the Gulf Coast.”

Beaumont’s application for certification is submitted as much. Haynes said the city should find out by the summer if they were accepted.

Williams said the state recommends certification to communities and is looking for cities to participate.

“I don’t know of any cities that have been disapproved as long as you follow the guidelines that they require with the resolution, which means the city council supports them and asks for them,” Williams said. “Then you set the policy, the fee, the schedule and things like that.”

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