No Room for Mass Film Office Chief

Come January, 2011 with a reorganization  of the Massachusetts Film Office – Executive Director Nick Paleologos will be out of a job. In the new year, the state’s film office will be administered through the  state Office of Travel and Tourism. As noted in the Globe earlier this month – the office of Housing and Economic Development (EOHED) Secretary Greg Bialecki – confirmed that “at this time, we have elected not to offer  Nick Paleologos a position.”

An editorial in today’s Globe questions the wisdom of letting Paleologos go –

THE FALL movie season has been a triumph for Massachusetts. That’s why it’s surprising, and almost inexplicable, that the Patrick administration would choose this moment to remove the hard-working head of the film office, Nick Paleologos.

Noting the many recent movies shot on location here in the Commonwealth, the editorial lauds Paleologos – a movie producer himself – for his valuable role in making the case to producers about the available tax credits and encouraging them to come to Massachusetts.  

Come Oscar time, Bay State residents will watch nominations handed out to films as varied as “The Social Network,’’ set in the academic world of Cambridge; “The Town,’’ about Charlestown; “The Fighter,’’ depicting the rise of Lowell’s “Irish’’ Micky Ward; and perhaps also the forthcoming “The Company Men,’’ about a Boston financial-services firm. The staggering range of stories shows how important the commercial arts can be to promoting local history and identity. The benefits to Massachusetts are immense.

The editorial wonders if  Paleologos’  successful lobbying of the Legislature against capping the tax credits  is at the root of his dismissal.

It’s out of character for Patrick to remove a successful official over a perceived lack of loyalty. The governor should be a big enough figure to tolerate underlings who are outspoken advocates for their work. Patrick’s perceived magnanimity was, after all, a prime reason for his reelection. He should find a way to retain Paleologos — and keep the film office working at top capacity.

Read the full Globe editorial here.