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Bill to resurrect Arizona's film office on hold

PHOENIX -- An effort to bring back Arizona's office of film back after its 2009 closure is currently on hold at the state capitol.

The film bill would reopen the state's film office for just over $600,000 per year, but Valley filmmaker Randy Murray Murray said there seems to be an anti-Hollywood sentiment in Arizona.

"It's spilling over to hard-working folks in Arizona who don't deserve that," he said. "It's a clean industry, pays well and there's no reason we shouldn't have a film industry in Arizona."

Murray said state Sen. Gail Griffin from southern Arizona has put a hold on the bill, at least temporarily. If the hold were lifted and the bill passed, the state would likely see an influx of millions of dollars.

"Having a strong film community here is better for the state than having Apple or Intel here," said Murray. "These are great jobs that create more jobs. Intel is a great company but they're affecting schools in the East Valley but film companies spread the wealth around a showoff our state. It's bad business to say no to them."

Murray said he's holding out hope the film bill will eventually be passed.

Hundreds of Hollywood classics have been filmed in Arizona including countless westerns, "Raising Arizona," "Star Wars" and many others.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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