Hawke’s Bay film industry has taken a big step forward with the opening of a community hub.
The hub in central Hastings will focus on the local film industry.
It is the official base for Eastern Screen Alliance, a regional film office and part of a national body, Regional Film Offices of New Zealand (RFONZ), promoting and supporting the development of the screen industry in Hawke’s Bay.
The space upstairs on the corner of Market and Heretaunga Streets has been empty for several years.
Cleaning and painting by ESA members have transformed the rooms, named Screen Central, into offices, a kitchen, a lounge and a small film studio.
Hastings District Mayor Sandra Hazlehurst attended the meeting and said the council believed in empowering people to invest in the arts and their pathways to employment through film, showcasing “our beautiful region to national and international opportunities”.
“Providing opportunities for our young people to stay in our region and work in film and the arts is really important to us,” Hazlehurst said.
There will be a charitable component where office space can be used free, but the main focus of Screen Central is the development of local talent.
“We wanted to create a community screen hub designed for local writers, actors and directors to work together,” ESA board chairman Gilly Lawrence said
Office space will be available as hot desks and there are rooms for training seminars and workshops.
It also means film creatives working on local productions have a place to meet, rehearse and network.
First published by HB Today.