The Magic of Movies and Housing the Creative Talents Who Make Them

The art of filmmaking has opened an economic stream that has  been bringing in business, revenues, and employment to California for decades, as global mobility professionals can attest to when they take care of their corporate housing.  While Hollywood in Los Angeles has remained the entertainment center to the public mind, northern California counties are a beehive of activity for movie producers scouting for sunnier locales, romantic ocean views, spacier suburbs, and out-of-the-way places that seem to transport you to another planet.

The austere mountains of Humboldt Redwoods State Park could not have been more intimidating when it showed a horizon that seemed to stretch into infinity in the post-apocalyptic Will-Smith-topbilled “Planet Earth”.  The San Francisco Bay Area has played host to  Marvel’s superhero moderate hit, “Ant Man”, and “Terminator: Genesys”, the supposedly final chapter in the man-vs.-machine epic. It also became the cinematic birthplace of Apple’s founder, Steve Jobs. Dig a little deeper, and you’ll find out that the state’s proud moviemaking heritage includes some of the most popular films of all time:  “E.T.”, “Dirty Harry”, “American Graffiti”, “Star Wars: The Return of the Jedi”, “Predator 2”, and “The Graduate”.

While the movie business is never in want of actors, part of the challenge that confronts the state hosting the film shooting is having a hireable population who will make up the behind-the-scenes crew, ranging from cameramen, make-up artists and costume supervisors to  the dozens of professionals completing the entire film crew.

Far from resting on its own laurels, San Francisco continues to draw in talent and major production companies alike with benefits like tax incentives and discounted rates from related service industries.

Hires that have just moved to the state might need help in relocation and settling down, as any of these shoots can take a couple of months.  This makes corporate housing for the assignees contracted by the movie producers critical. Arrangements have to be ironed out  well in advance to make sure the camera keeps rolling smoothly and without delay.  All hands have to be on board.

Here are four tips for global mobility professionals handling the relocation of artists in northern California:

  1. The housing that will give these artists the comfort that they urgently need must also make allowances for their fast lifestyle.  A movie crew can work at nights, odd hours, and days on a stretch, with very little time to bunk.  Their ideal home away from home would probably look like something that can only house the techpreneurs in Silicon Valley:  functional but fun-looking, no-frills but comfortable, and clean and clutterless so they can doze off as soon as they come in.
  2. The neighborhood surrounding the accommodation would have to be relatively quiet;  less foot traffic, less families, less crowds the better.  These artists will value every second of privacy and peace that they can get.
  3. The neighborhood should also be packed with service providers that will ease some of the daily stress away from the artists’ hectic life:  Services for laundry, food delivery, and even house cleaning should just be a breath away.
  4. Rest and recreation should also be accessible.  Once the film wraps or in-between breaks, these artists would want to blow off steam and probably hit the night out with their friends. Cozy diners, five-star restaurants,  bars with free-flowing drinks, clubs where they can unwind; they would be looking for these once the shooting is over.