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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Show business is booming in Oregon…and FREE screening tickets!

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Casting Director Lana Veenker joined KATU’s Helen Raptis and Dave Anderson on AM Northwest to talk about the latest productions and what all the activity means for Oregonians.

For more information on the productions and how to get involved, see our previous blog post below.


Excited about all the movies and TV shows shooting in Oregon? Want to help us make sure these clean, green, high-paying jobs keep coming in, not only for local film industry professionals, but for individuals and small businesses all across the state?

We need you to show your support of extending the Oregon Production Investment Fund (OPIF), the successful incentive program that has attracted all of these productions to Oregon.

2011 is projected to be our busiest year ever for film and TV, and we want to keep the momentum going!

The program is due to sunset in 2012. Without your help, it could all go away, so please join us!


Join us in Salem on March 15th at 4:00 pm, when a conceptual video about the program will be taped on the Capitol steps. We want your presence and your stories, to help raise awareness of the powerful economic and cultural impact of the film and video industry in Oregon.


RSVP for the video shoot, and you’ll get a FREE ticket to the exclusive 7:00 pm screening of “Meek’s Cutoff” that follows at the Historic Elsinore Theatre (normally $20!).

“Meek’s Cutoff,” directed by Kelly Reichardt and starring Michelle Williams, was filmed in Eastern Oregon and has been shown at Venice, Toronto and Sundance Film Festivals.

The individuals and businesses below have made an extraordinary show of support by donating the cost of the tickets AND bus service from Portland so that you can go, because they understand the value of this legislation to our state.

Free tickets are limited, so RSVP now at Be sure to mention that Lana Veenker Casting referred you, so that your ticket comes from our allocation!

Tuesday, March 15th
Oregon State Capitol Building
900 Court Street NE, Salem, Oregon 97301
2:00 pm: Arrive at OMSI, if taking the bus from Portland
4:00 pm: Be ready at Capitol steps
Be sure to mention Lana Veenker Casting in the “Who Referred You?” box!

Tuesday, March 15th
The Historic Elsinore Theatre
170 High Street SE, Salem, Oregon 97301
6:30 pm: Doors open
7:00 pm: Screening
Free ticket when you RSVP for 4:00 pm Event

Can’t make the 4:00 pm video shoot? Buy advance tickets to the screening at Tickets West, The Elsinore Theatre or the Oregon Film office.

Hope to see you there!

Thank you to ticket sponsors Enterprise Rent-a-Car, Bent Image Labs, David Cress, Koerner Camera, Kamp Grizzly, Gearhead Grip and Electric, @ Large Films, Picture This Production Services & Stage, Bonnie Roseman, Rose City Realtors, Funnelbox, Gales Creek Insurance, and Pacific Grip and Lighting.


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Show business is ‘on a roll’ in Oregon

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Ken Boddie talks to Vince Porter, Executive Director of the Governor’s Office of Film and Television, and Lana Veenker, about the state of the film industry in Oregon.

Show business is ‘on a roll’ in Oregon
KOIN 6 News
March 1, 2011
by Ken Boddie




They’re just three of the television and film productions made right here in Oregon; and there’s more where that came from.

Film and television in Oregon is headed for a record year in 2011. A major network, NBC Universal, is committed to shooting a pilot in Oregon based on the Grimm’s fairy tales, and several more projects are coming that could put hundreds of Oregonians to work.

Leverage is into its third year–they just started shooting this week up on Mount Hood,” said Vince Porter, director of the Governor’s Office of Film and Television.

Portlandia caught the imagination of enough people that they’re coming back for a second season this summer,” said Porter.

“We can say that 2011 will be the biggest year we’ve ever had in the state.”

At any given time there are about 13,000 Oregonians working in the film and television industry.

Since 2007, producers have spent about $178 million in Oregon, with an overall economic impact of $350 million.

Those numbers are expected to grow to $275 million and about $500 million, respectively, by the end of the year.

Lana Veenker owns a Portland casting agency that hires for Leverage and is currently casting for the new NBC’s upcoming Grimm-based project.

She sees the growth in Oregon’s film industry, adding that Oregon is definitely on the map when it comes to film and the proof is in the jobs.

“We have fantastic film crews, we have a really strong base of actors, we have every kind of location you can imagine,” said Veenker.

Link to full article.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Interview with Rick Emerson on NW 32’s "Outlook Portland"

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Watch as Lana discusses the casting biz, scams, the craft of acting and Oregon film production with Rick Emerson on NW32’s “Outlook Portland.”

This weekend’s Outlook Portland: Of Twilight, Leverage, and starry eyes.

She’s done the casting for Leverage, Twilight, The Road, and myriad other projects for the big and small screens. She’s Lana Veenker, and as head of Lana Veenker Casting, she helps to craft the products that entertain billions of people around the globe. She’s also a gatekeeper of sorts, one through which Portland’s aspiring actors must inevitably pass.

So…how does casting work? What is a casting director really looking for? And how far have Twilight Moms gone in an attempt to get their kids cast in a flick?





Thursday, September 3, 2009

"Leverage" returning for third season

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27 August 2009 11:00 AM, PDT
By James Hibberd

TNT has renewed “Leverage” for a third season

The Timothy Hutton starrer, about a team of con artists and hackers who bring down corrupt bigwigs, has been averaging 4.1 million viewers and ranked ninth on the list of most-watched returning TV shows on cable this summer.

“Thanks in large part to its engaging cast and clever storytelling, ‘Leverage’ has proved itself to be one of the most exciting and fun hours on television,” said Michael Wright, head of programming for TNT. “The producers, cast and crew have been incredible to work with, and we anticipate another wonderful season.”

The network ordered 15 episodes to debut next year. The show’s summer finale is Sept. 9, then it will return to finish its second season this winter.

TNT this month also renewed freshman drama “Hawthorne”; another new drama, “Dark Blue,” remains on the fence. »

See full article at

(Congrats, cast and crew!)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Lana Gives Tips to Child Actors on Better.TV

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Brooke Carlson of the nationally syndicated program “Better” talks with Casting Director Lana Veenker about getting your child into the biz, no matter where you live.

PS: Just a note that Lana was misquoted when talking about what to look for in a good acting teacher. Good teachers focus on OBJECTIVES (using verbs, actions) not EMOTIONS (i.e. adjectives, mugging, facial expressions).

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Watch AM Northwest on Wednesday morning

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Late notice, but Lana will be on KATU’s AM Northwest program tomorrow morning (Wednesday) to talk with Helen Raptis and Dave Anderson about Oregon’s film incentive program and the economic benefit it brings to the state. She also will be announcing casting information about upcoming projects. Be sure to tune in….

Hope to see you!


Monday, November 24, 2008

KATU: Vampire Fans line up for "Twilight" Premiere

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Joe English of KATU News hits the “Twilight” premiere party at Rocket on Thursday night, before heading to Lloyd Center Cinemas where fans wait in line for the midnight screening.

PORTLAND, Ore. – One of the most anticipated movies of the year is hitting the silver screen and fans could not be happier.

Twilight, based on a best selling book series by Stephenie Meyer, is about a 17-year-old girl who moves to a small town in the Northwest and falls in love with a mysterious classmate, who turns out to be a vampire.

The movie holds a special interest for folks in our neck of the woods because many of the scenes were shot in Oregon and Washington. And a lot of the cast and crew are locals, like 7-year-old Catherine Grimme from Portland, who played the main character Bella as a little girl.

Link to full article.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Casting Company Seeks Pregnant Woman to Play Charlize Theron Double

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“The Road” starring Viggo Mortensen shoots in Oregon in May
April 27, 2008

PORTLAND, ORE. Lana Veenker Casting announced today that it is seeking a pregnant Charlize Theron lookalike for “The Road,” a new feature film directed by John Hillcoat and based on Cormac McCarthy’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name.

Casting Director Lana Veenker says that the pregnant woman is needed to work as a body double for Academy Award winner Charlize Theron, slated to play actor Viggo Mortensen’s pregnant wife. “The producers prefer to use an actual pregnant woman, rather than put a fake belly on the actress. But it’s important that she resemble Charlize in height, weight and hair color.”

Caucasian women with blonde to dirty blonde hair, height 5’9” to 5’11”, who are around four months pregnant and who normally wear a dress size six or eight are encouraged to apply. There is no charge to be considered for the role and no nudity will be required. The woman chosen will work for two or three days in mid-May.

Women who fit the requirements should submit their photos and contact details as soon as possible to Lana Veenker Casting by emailing Eryn Goodman at talent(at)

Additional information about Lana Veenker Casting is available on the company’s website and MySpace page.


Monday, January 29, 2007

Valley of Outstanding Ratings!

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I got a call from “Valley of Light” director Brent Shields the morning after it screened on CBS with some great news: Our show knocked it out of the ballpark, with nearly 15 million viewers, beating out “The Apprentice” and every other show on television.

Here’s the email that came to me from his office:

Last night’s Hallmark Hall of Fame presentation, THE VALLEY OF LIGHT, was #1 in its time period in households with a 9.3 rating and 14 share in the “fast national” ratings. In addition, the HHOF was #1 in total viewers (14,730,000) and adults 25-54 with a 3.9 rating and a 9 share.

NBC and ABC finished in a virtual tie for 2nd in all three categories.


This is the strongest performance for a Hallmark Hall of Fame presentation since SILVER BELLS (10.3/15) in November, 2005 and the largest audience for any movie on any network since since JESSE STONE: DEATH IN PARADISE (14,810,000 viewers) on April 30, 2006.

The weekend movie box office results are page 1 news in USA Today,
Variety and Hollywood Reporter…but more people watched the Hallmark Hall of Fame on Sunday night than attended the top 10 grossing movies combined last weekend (14.7 million vs. 12.5 million).


Congrats to all the cast and crew for a job well done!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Valley of Talent!

by admin

We all had fun watching the 229th Presentation of the Hallmark Hall of Fame, “The Valley of Light,” last night on CBS. Kudos to all the actors and crew on a beautiful production.

Here are a few photos from the LA premiere last week at the Directors’ Guild of America:

Director Brent Shields and Casting Director Lana Veenker
Lana Veenker with Lead Actor Chris Klein (“Noah Locke”) and Co-Star Betty Moyer (“Ada Reynolds”)
President of Hallmark Hall Fame Productions Brad Moore, with Betty Moyer, Brent Shields and the film’s dialect coach, Voice Actress Mary McDonald-Lewis
Lana Veenker with Casting Director Molly Lopata (whose IMDb photos don’t appear to be her) and Lana’s guest, Casting Director Irene Cagen
Irene Cagen with guest, Actor Robert Blanche, Betty Moyer and Mary McDonald-Lewis
Lana Veenker and Mary McDonald-Lewis with Co-Stars James Marsh (“Peavo”), William Joseph Elk III (“Marshall”) and Betty Moyer
Lana Veenker with Producer Andrew Gottlieb
Betty Moyer with Actor Geoff Pierson (“Whitlow”) and James Marsh
Brent Shields and Mary Mac
Betty Moyer with Andrew Gottlieb
Chris Klein and Mary Mac