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Barry Levinson joins forces with Maryland Film Industry Coalition


| Image by from mdfilm.org On the morning of Tuesday, Jan. 27, Barry Levinson, one of Baltimore's favorite filmmaking sons, and "business leaders" will address issues "hindering Maryland's film industry" at 9:30 a.m. at Annapolis' Lawyers Mall by the statue of Thurgood Marshall. So says a press release sent out earlier today by the Maryland Film Industry Coalition, which describes itself as an "alliance of business leaders, labor unions, educational institutions, government entities and individuals that recognize the importance of film, television and media production to Maryland's economy," on its web site.

The Coalition--which lists its Board of Directors officers as Scott Johnson; Ober Kaler, lawyer; Jed Dietz, the director of the Maryland Film Festival; Debbie Donaldson Dorsey, the director of the Baltimore Film Office; and Eric Pripstein of the Columbia accounting firm Coale, Pripstein and Associates, and a 21-member board that includes state delegate Melony Griffith (D-District 25), Timonium-based Bond Lumber owner Bunnie Gleiman, IATSE business agent Rosemarie Levy, Keiffer Mitchell, Jr., local casting institution Pat Moran, producer Nina Noble (The Corner, The Wire, Generation Kill), Baltimore Area Convention and Visitors Association President and CEO Tom Noonan, and others--outlines its mission as to "advocate for effective incentives that will enable Maryland to regain and enhance its competitiveness as a premier location for film, television and media production." It's a private business incorporated last summer, according to the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation.

This announcement comes almost a week after Gov. Martin O'Malley announced the state's fiscal 2010 budget, which reduced Maryland's film production incentive grant by $2 million. This press conference appears to be one of the Maryland Film Industry Coalition's first public announcements, following a short video posted to YouTube last December about Maryland losing tax revenue and jobs when the state loses film productions to other states, embedded below, that lists a number of movies that the state lost--including New Line's Hairspray remake and Annapolis.

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