Change at helm as Film Bay of Plenty grows

Jade Kent, Tracy Hampton and Elysia Gibb step into roles leading Film Bay of Plenty to continue growing the film industry in the Bay of Plenty. Photo: Supplied.

The Bay of Plenty’s screen media development agency – Film Bay of Plenty – sees a change to its management structure this week.

Elysia Gibb, Tracy Hampton and Jade Kent will advance in their positions to continue to foster the growth and development of the organisation.

After five years in the CEO position, Anton Steel is stepping down, but will remain as a trustee on the Film BOP Board, supporting the organisation's ongoing strategy.

Looking to give broader coverage to the Bay of Plenty region, Elysia will be taking on the role of marketing manager, Tracy as film office executive for the Western Bay of Plenty and Tauranga, and Jade as film office executive for Eastern Bay of Plenty, Rotorua and Taupō.

"We thank Anton for his tireless effort in helping to build the screen media industry in the Bay of Plenty,” says Film BOP board co-chair Glenn Dougal. “ We wish him all the very best with his next endeavours and look forward to working with him in his position as a board member.

“Amongst other achievements, Anton has been instrumental in establishing Waiariki Film Studios in Rotorua, which is a credit to his perseverance and passion for the industry and the economic success of the Bay," says Glenn.

Anton Steel has stepped down from his CEO role after five years establishing Film Bay of Plenty, but will remain as a trustee on the Film BOP Board, supporting the organisation's ongoing strategy. Photo: Supplied.

Elysia, Tracy and Jade have an intimate knowledge of the local film sector, having worked within the organisation for a number of years and nationally and internationally.

Having worked on feature films including The Hobbit, Wolverine, Yogi Bear, and 10000BC, Elysia's film industry knowledge is expansive.  She has worked for Film Bay of Plenty since 2019, and previous to this, split her life working between the film and tourism industries.

Elysia spent 15 years living in Queenstown, successfully marketing and managing a heliskiing company. Her skills lie in marketing, logistics, coordinating, networking and administration.

As an executive producer, Tracy has extensive experience in the film and TV industry. Working as an international model, on her return to NZ, Tracy found her passion for working behind the camera. This included 12 years as a casting director, and casting and coordinating International TV series and films prior to her extensive career as a producer.

Tracy is the founder of Halo Productions, which sees her shooting national and international productions throughout New Zealand and Australia. She joined Film Bay of Plenty in 2018 and continues filming in the unique locations of Bay of Plenty.

From New Zealand to Qatar and then to Opōtiki, Jade has some serious travel miles and invaluable work experiences under her belt.

As a previous logistics supervisor working for Al Jazeera English, Jade knows how important having a good foundation of people, systems, and training is to any organisation. Prior to working for Film BOP, Jade worked for TVNZ, Maori TV, Sky and Al Jazeera.

"We are thrilled to support Elysia, Tracy and Jade to thrive at the helm of the Bay of Plenty's key screen media development agency, one that has an established and successful history of promoting and growing the region's screen media industry,” says Glenn.

"The new structure reflects our evolution in finding better ways to meet the growth aspirations of the local film industry and to capitalise on the predicted national growth as well as supporting regional economic prosperity.”

Film Bay of Plenty is one of nine regional film offices nationwide and is funded by local government as well as BayTrust, TECT and RECT. Their remit covers supporting the growth of screen media across the entire Bay of Plenty region.

"Film Bay of Plenty's work is essential to the advancement of media growth in the Bay, and Elysia, Tracy and Jade bring a wealth of diverse yet complementary experience and knowledge to the role. The team is eager to promote the Bay of Plenty's screen media industry,” says Glenn.

The film industry is worth $3b per annum to New Zealand. The Bay of Plenty region represents five percent of the country's population, but has traditionally not seen five percent of this spend. However, during the 2020/21 financial year, there was a marked increase in local investment with approximately $4m in local spending from drama projects, up from $500K in 2019/20.

"There was also a fourfold increase during the summer and autumn period this year for filming consents processed by the Tauranga City Council alone. The team's hard work to promote the Bay of Plenty as a filming location is paying off," says Glenn.

The organisation's key focuses for the next three years – aligned with its Strategic Plan – include connecting the local industry with paid work and invaluable on-set experience; growing the knowledge of the region's crew base; and supporting the development and realisation of local content and continuing to service and facilitate enquiries for the region.

Additionally, the organisation will drive screen media infrastructure and sector development initiatives for businesses and regional workforce development. It will also deliver screen production attraction and marketing and continue to promote the region as an exciting and 'easy' place to film.

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