Arizona Film Expo
October 15, 2019 | Tucson, AZ
Tucson Convention Center

The Arizona Film Expo

In 1912, actor/director Romaine Fielding Sr. arrived in Prescott, Arizona, and set up the western branch of the Lubin Manufacturing Company and shot nine movies that year, before moving to Tucson and then Nogales, eventually filming some 96 movies in Arizona, as well as the 1913 Battle of Nogales.

The following year, Augustus Thomas filmed Arizona (the first of three movies with this title) in Arizona. Since then, over 5,000 films and television shows have been made in our state. As the only state to serve as a significant satellite for film production for more than 50 years, Arizona was colloquially known as “Hollywood’s Back Lot” and enjoyed a heyday of production, from westerns to science fiction, documentaries to cooking shows, tourism to local access programs.

The Arizona film industry flourished. Robert Shelton claimed that Old Tucson Studios was the second biggest tourism draw besides the Grand Canyon, with the likes of John Wayne, Ben Johnson and Gary Clarke frequently being seen there. The City of Tucson and Pima County offered, and continue to offer, free permits for filming in city and county limits. The Tucson film office (now called Film Tucson) arranged free office and storage space for long-term productions in the city.

From 2006 to 2010, Arizona offered tax incentives to the film industry but, in 2010, the tax incentives went away. And so did some of the film industry. But some from outside the state have continued to come and Arizona-based filmmakers, animators, commercial and broadcast journalism continued to create and produce projects. Even without state-level incentives Film Tucson and the Phoenix Film Office continued to bring in hundreds of commercials, features, television series, music videos, reality TV shows, travel shows, food shows and more.

In 2016, Matthew Earl Jones was appointed as the new Arizona Film Commissioner by the governor under the auspices of the Arizona Commerce Authority. He hired a staff, started the Reel Savings program (where Marriott and other companies began offering discounts to Arizona film productions) and got Arizona State Parks & Trails and ADOT to agree to offer free permitting. Monsoon Productions began offering a 30-day, 30% cash-back rebate on equipment and services. Tucson Convention Center partnered with Film Tucson to offer its facilities as a sound stage. Arizona enjoys more than 20 film festivals throughout the year. Modern Studios opened its new headquarters in Marana…

While we may not currently have tax incentives at the state level, we have low sales taxes, local incentives and so many locations, people and reasons to continue to film in Arizona and for those of you outside our state to come and for you in our state to know about in order to help your production.

Our mission, and the reason for the creation of the Arizona Film Expo, is to remind the world that we’re still here and we’re still making movies.

Come play with us!

The Big Idea

While actors and crew in Hollywood can be picky and choosy about their shooting locations, actors and crew in Arizona tend to view the entire state as local. Also, since attracting financing from outside the state, many here are willing to travel throughout the state to work on projects and assist each other.

While this is awesome and admirable, there exists a great need for better, centralized communication within the state film industry so we can know what is happening throughout Arizona.

The AFE will be a business exposition and conference for Arizona filmmakers, actors, directors, producers, writers and crew members to:

  • Network: Get together with the greatest number of Arizona (and external) film industry professionals at once;
  • Disseminate and Gather Information: Find out and tell what is being worked on throughout our state and who/what resources are available here;
  • Build: Enlist support and financing from colleagues, businesses and other people in the greater Arizona community;
  • Educate: Workshops, how-tos, panels and programming;
  • Show Off: Show the greater Arizona community, Hollywood and the rest of the country that we’re still here and we’re still a place to come and make movies;
  • Buy/Sell: Part of the expo includes tables and booths for vendors. We will also have agents, managers and distributors in attendance, have pitch sessions and more.

Our goal is to be the business event of the year for the film industry of Arizona.

The event will consist of trade show floor and display tables for vendors and industry professionals; cities and towns; tourist attractions; supporting industries; chambers of commerce; economic development officials and more.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019
9 a.m. - 8 p.m.

Your general passport is just $35 and provides access to the entire 10 days of TENWEST. Special events throughout the week are available as add-ons. Discounts available to military, students, teachers, nonprofit organizations on the TENWEST website. SAG-AFTRA and IATSE members, please email for your discount code.

Please join us from 6-8 p.m. for the Inaugural Arizona Film & Media Hall of Fame Awards Ceremony. Arizona Film Commissioner Matthew Earl Jones will be our keynote speaker, after which emcee Mark Goldstein and Expo Chair Daryl Mallett will kick off the awards ceremony.

This year’s inductees are: Steven Spielberg, Barbara Eden, Gary Clarke, Ivan “Red” Wolverton, Margie Wolverton, Robert Shelton, Old Tucson Studios, Tom Mix, Lubin Manufacturing Company and Romaine Fielding Sr.

Presenters will include Arizona Film Comissioner Matthew Earl Jones, Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, Nogales Mayor Arturo Garino; Arizona Western Film Historians Charlie LeSueur and Marty Frees; Marana Film Commissioner Laura Funkhouser Cortelyou; and more. Accepting posthumous awards will be Bob Shelton’s widow, Carolyn Olson Shelton; Romaine Fielding Sr.’s granddaughter; and Tom Mix’s grandson.

The Expo Team

Daryl F. Mallett

Caribou Moving Pictures The Chairman of the Arizona Film Expo, Daryl F. Mallett is a Christian and father of three beautiful children. He is also an award-winning actor, producer, writer and a partner at Caribou Moving Pictures LLC. As an actor, Mallett has appeared in Carmady’s People: The Case of the Reluctant Major (1986), Star […]

Genevieve Anderson

Too Loud a Solitude Vice Chair Genevieve Anderson is an artist, filmmaker and producer, making sculptures and narrative films with puppets. Driven by her fascination of the human interior, she gives form to this inner realm through the unique potential of the puppet body and the puppet figure as a distillation of being: an avatar […]

Timothy Bryant

Caribou Moving Pictures Timothy Bryant is the visionary force and founding caribou behind Caribou Moving Pictures. Growing up in Burbank, California, surrounded by the industry, his experience includes work as executive liaison to the vice president of Columbia Pictures Entertainment Television, publicity coordinator at Columbia Pictures Studios and producer’s assistant, camera assistant, client liaison and […]

Laura Funkhouser Cortelyou

Town of Marana Film Office Laura Funkhouser Cortelyou, Marana Film Office and Town of Marana’s tourism and marketing manager, formerly served as the Tucson Museum of Art, where she was director of marketing and public relations. She holds a master’s degree from Fielding Graduate University in Human and Organizational Development and a bachelor’s degree from […]

Genie Joseph

Independent Film Arizona Genie Joseph is the president of Independent Film Arizona and former CEO of Hawaii Studios. She is a screenwriter, award-winning film director and hosted a television show called The Genie Show.

Ethan Moe

Caribou Moving Pictures Ethan Moe is the director of three short films, Rude Awakening (2002), The Message (2004) and Retrocausality (2018), and has served in numerous other positions in the media industry, including 1st assistant director on Illusion (2005), editor on The Heartbreaker (2003), gaffer on Cookies for Callie (2003) and best boy/grip on Rosa […]

Cyndie Shaffstall

Spider Trainers Film Liaison, Arizona’s White Mountain White Mountains Film LiaisonCyndie Shaffstall, is an entrepreneur and founder of Spider Trainers. Her experience is in marketing of all kinds: personal, business and regional. In addition to owning Spider Trainers, a marketing and web-development company, she is a partner in Hidden Star, companies focused on causes she […]

Dawn Zimmermann

Caribou Moving Pictures Best-known for her fantastic artistic and costuming skills, Dawn Zimmermann has quickly become Caribou Moving Pictures’ Girl Friday. She can organize a three-ring circus faster than a speeding bullet, dodge angry producers with grace and poise and sort out an attitude of actors with calm patience. She also serves as Caribou’s office […]

Mark Crockett

Paddlefoot Productions public library-educated nerd, pre-adolescent Vice Chair Mark Crockett was the only kid in third grade at Lincoln Elementary School in East Orange, New Jersey with an adult library card (yes, he is that old). Nose buried in a book, but fleet on the playground, he was athletic enough to be the #5 schoolboy […]

Joe Peña

Caribou Moving Pictures Joe Peña is a Christian, husband, father of eight beautiful children. He was born in Quito, Ecuador, and grew up in Burbank, CA. He graduated from university with a double major in accounting and finance and worked as a banker and auditor for several large financial institutions for about 10 years and […]

Our Sponsors

Thank you to our sponsors for the opportunity to put on the Arizona Film Expo!