OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, OCTOBER 31, 2022 – Prairie Surf Media has announced a new strategic partnership with the film and entertainment industry’s leading lighting and grip provider, Cinelease, Inc. Through its innovative and transformative leadership team, Prairie Surf Media has accelerated the growth of streaming, television, and film production in Oklahoma. With decades of combined experience in the entertainment industry, founders and Co-CEO’s Rachel Cannon and Matt Payne are committed to bringing a first-class filmmaking experience to their clients and productions at Prairie Surf Studios in downtown Oklahoma City.
With customer service as their number one priority, these like-minded companies share a goal to guarantee filmmakers access to premium sound stages and best-in-quality gear as part of a polished production experience from start to finish. With Cinelease as the exclusive in-house provider of lighting and grip, Prairie Surf Media’s clients will now be able to choose from a wide selection of equipment from a vast inventory.
“This partnership has been two-and-a-half years in the making. It started through a friendship, and after discussing our goals of providing top-tier services to filmmakers, this became the easiest contract we’ve entered into,” said Cannon. “Matt and I come from a production background so we understand the demands of it. We built Prairie Surf Studios to provide an elevated production experience and that starts with in-house vendors like Cinelease.”
While Cinelease brings 45 years of industry experience and expertise to the area, Prairie Surf Media brings the space – 1.3 million square feet of it. As the largest soundstage in the midwest, Prairie Surf Media delivers production services, post-production, music licensing and premiere vendors – all housed in a single building to drive collaboration and efficiency. With the investment Cinelease has made in new inventory over the past several years, filmmakers are guaranteed to have their pick of state-of-the-art lighting and grip gear from leading suppliers.
Paramount Plus recently wrapped production at Prairie Surf Studios on its new series created by Yellowstone‘s Taylor Sheridan, with The Sopranos alum Terence Winter at the helm as executive producer, writer and showrunner. Tulsa King starring Sylvestor Stallone debuts on November 13th on Paramount Plus following the national sensation, Yellowstone. Paramount’s staggering investment in Tulsa King affirms Oklahoma, and Prairie Surf Studios specifically, have arrived on the scene.
“This partnership is a validation of the strength of both companies,” said Chris Rogers, Cinelease’s Vice President of Marketing. “Since opening in 2021, Prairie Surf Media has shown the drive and business savvy it takes to be a leader in this emerging market by landing several significant productions including the much-anticipated Tulsa King. They’ve proven themselves as abundantly capable to accommodate motion picture, television production, and post-production projects of all sizes and types. We love the energy and creativity of this studio and their passion for the industry. Our services paired with the facility and production capabilities that Prairie Surf Media offers will make this studio a premier filmmaking destination.”
In 2021, the Filmed In Oklahoma Act created one of the most competitive film incentives in the nation – changing the landscape of the Oklahoma filmmaking industry. Qualifying productions can receive a cash rebate up to 38% for filming on location in Oklahoma or at an Oklahoma certified sound stage, with an annual cap of $30 million. With five clearspan soundstages and a full suite of production and creative services on site, the 2021 incentive program set Prairie Surf Studios up for success.
“Oklahoma is committed to growing the film industry,” affirmed Oklahoma’s Lt. Governor, Matt Pinnell, who helps lead the State’s tourism and commerce departments. “The film industry is dynamic, bringing creative energy to our economy and excellent jobs that showcase the diverse talents of Oklahomans. As Prairie Surf Media has validated, we now have exceptional facilities and studio leadership to support productions large and small and do so economically and efficiently.”
Along with state of the art facilities and incentives, Prairie Surf Media has led a workforce expansion program to support the industry. Working with K-12, career-tech, and higher education partners across the state, Prairie Surf Media is leveraging its deep industry connections to support the development of cutting-edge curriculum and learning spaces to unlock future job and career opportunities for students in this high demand field. And Oklahomans are responding, as waiting lists continue to grow for access to these exciting programs.
“In Oklahoma, we are fortunate to have a nimble career tech system, as well as universities and colleges that have quickly responded to industry needs by standing up courses ranging from grip and electric and art department intensives to production payroll and accounting courses,” said Payne.
In addition to incentives and infrastructure, Oklahoma offers diverse on-location shooting options from bustling downtowns, to historic districts, to mountains, mesas, rivers, and more, offering more close- proximity versatility than many big city film studios. The combination of these attributes, along with the development of a local, permanent filmmaking community and the launch of Prairie Surf Studios, has already led to MovieMaker Magazine naming Oklahoma City as a top place to live and work as a filmmaker in both 2021 and 2022.
Prairie Surf Media has already become an anchor in this new filmmaking community and the wisdom and exceptional service that comes with Cinelease’s 45-year heritage will cement the studio’s position as Oklahoma’s premier filmmaking destination.
“I truly believe this industry will create sustainable jobs, economic diversity and a creative path for the next generation here in Oklahoma,” said Cannon. “We are building an eco-system that supports productions on a larger scale. With that will come a solid foundation for this to grow upon for years to come.”
Industry Lighting and Grip gold standard since its creation in 1977, Cinelease Inc.’s intent has been to serve and deliver the best in quality lighting and grip equipment, power distribution, grip trucks, expendables and sound stages to both small and large-scale productions. Wherever the productions go – we will be there to greet them. Whatever the job, wherever the shoot, there’s one clear choice.
About Prairie Surf Media:
Prairie Surf Media (PSM) is an Oklahoma City-based global production company focused on multi- platform content creation. Through its innovative and transformative leadership team, the company has accelerated the growth of streaming, television and film production in Oklahoma. With decades of combined experience in the entertainment industry, PSM is the state’s undisputed category leader. PSM is co-founded by Oklahoma natives, Rachel Cannon and Matt Payne.
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