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February 11, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Ken Ziffren, Los Angeles’s newly appointed film czar, vowed on Monday to continue the battle waged by his predecessor, the late Tom Sherak, to persuade Sacramento lawmakers to sweeten tax incentives for filmmakers in order to curb runaway production to other states and countries. “This is a critical moment for our industry and our economy,” Ziffren said. “If we don’t fight back now, these jobs are going to be lost for good, and that would be a devastating blow to our middle class.” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who introduced Ziffren, a prominent entertainment attorney in Southern California, commented, “Ken will be a powerful leader in our fight against other states that are taking our jobs, and he will be aggressive about streamlining government so red tape doesn’t contribute to driving production away.” Ziffren’s late father, Paul Ziffren, was regarded as a political kingmaker and one of the most influential political strategists in the state, who might well have been able to twist enough arms to push through tax measures that would benefit the industry. However, state lawmakers have shown increasing reluctance to show special favoritism to the film industry. And the conservative noted on Monday the irony of a left-leaning Hollywood, which generally argues against tax breaks for corporations, now seeking them for themselves.