Mayor’s Office of Cultural Economy focuses on economic growth

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — On Wednesday afternoon, New Orleans Mayor Cantrell held a press conference to talk about economic growth and sustainability in the city. Local cultural organizations joined the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Economy to recognize the partnerships that support the mission of creating opportunities and systems to “enable true economic activity.”

In the press conference, Mayor Cantrell emphasized the importance of preserving New Orleans culture and investing in the cultural community. “ You cannot pick and choose what part of the culture you want to support we want to support all of it,” said Cantrell.

The Mayor’s Office of Cultural Economy wants to provide growth for cultural economy stakeholders and the public. The mission, “Embraces the Culture” showcases local expressions of art, literary arts, film, music, crafts, fashion, and culinary.

Lisa Alexis, the Director of the Office of Cultural Economy said that this year’s cultural events were a success, especially the French Quarter Fest which had record numbers. Alexis added that the Final Four was an “economic win” for the city of New Orleans. At ESSENCE Fest over 25 local vendors sold out of their products and merchandise, which is also a “win” for the community.

Along with the success, Carroll Morton the Director of Film New Orleans announced some good news for the film industry. Morton said, “the film industry is continuing to boom in the city of New Orleans.” She added that to date, $831 million dollars have been spent on production. New Orleans is ranked the 4th major production hub in the United States. Infrastructure and crew are what attract many productions to be filmed in the city. The productions bring in many opportunities for locals to get their start in the industry. Morton said that if you are 18 years old and willing to work hard it is a great way to get your foot in the door.

This year, 4 training programs have been offered to those interested. The training is offered by NOVAC which is working towards diversifying the workforce by bringing more women into the industry.

Morton said that currently there are 10 productions filming in the New Orleans area, including surrounding parishes. She mentioned that 2 AMC television series are underway along with three Disney projects, Universal Studios projects, and a Netflix show. Some of the films include The Crossover, Queer Eye, and Interview with a Vampire.

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