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The Spotlight series highlights some of our local industry talent: on-screen and behind-the-scenes, established and up-and-coming. We asked Reed Smoot to provide insight into his work as a Cinematographer, how he got started, and what advice he has for people trying to get into the film industry.
Reed Smoot pictured above with an IMAX 3D Film Camera.
Reed Smoot is a local cinematographer with a filmography starting in 1971 and keeps busy both mixing IMAX large format films and narrative film work and teaching Master Classes. Reed spent time this past summer working on the made-in-Utah production 'The Happy Worker' which is currently in post-production. When asked about filming in Utah, Reed responded,

"While my work has taken me to nearly every corner of the globe, Utah has always been my home and working here always preferable. I was lucky growing up — I knew what I wanted to do and got lots of help and support along the way. That first film job that I did with Kieth Merrill (for free) was the smartest investment of my career. The best advice to give one desiring to be a filmmaker — figure out what you want to do as early as possible on your path — don’t hesitate to network at every opportunity, be determined and don’t give up. And, always try to work with people who know more than you."

Read Reed's full story and interview on our blog at


Tucked against the mouth of Price Canyon and bordering alongside the lapping banks of the Price River, Helper is a quaint town steeped in state history. Known as the “Hub of Carbon County” Helper is home to two classic American industries: coal mines and the railway. These trades would prove formative in the city’s history and directly shape the culture around it.
Small nondescript ghost-towns dot the landscape just beyond Helper’s borders. They serve as both a reminder of the city’s historic past and a potential backdrop for the artistically minded. The Butch Cassidy Film Festival, for example, is held annually in February - hearkening back to a time where Butch himself roamed the city streets. In fact, Helper is no stranger to the art world. Small boutiques selling arts and crafts as well as galleries exhibiting new and curated pieces can be seen frequently along Main Street, proof of recent revitalization efforts to highlight the vibrant arts community.

The value of Helper stems directly from its rich culture, heritage, and ambiance. The chugging sound of diesel engines, vintage architecture, and endless mountain vistas combine to create a truly unique location for travel, photography, and film. Most notably, the 2008 cult-classic 'Adventures of Power' written and directed by Ari Gold about a small town dreamer named Power in his quest to become the world’s greatest air-drummer.

For more information about filming in Helper, contact us .
The red carpet was rolled out at the Capitol Rotunda for Utah Film Commission's annual showcase of the local film and digital entertainment industry on March 6, 2019. With great a great turnout from the talented people who make up Utah’s varied and thriving film industry, community leaders and elected officials had a chance to explore work from education, digital, exhibition, and production companies throughout the state.

Thank you to all the organizations that were a part of Film Day on the Hill.
Brigham Young University, Film Fatales, Larry H. Miller Megaplex Theaters, Motion Picture Association of Utah, NEBTEK, Redman Movies & Stories, Salt Lake Community College, Salt Lake Film Society, Spy Hop Productions, Sundance Institute, Talent Management Group, University of Utah - GApp Lab, Utah Film Center, Utah Film Studios, Utah Valley University

Watch a short video from this year's Film Day on the Hill to learn more.


‘Yellowstone’ Season 2 Gets Premiere Date On Paramount Network, Deadline
TV review: BYUtv's 'Dwight in Shining Armor' is pretty funny and shows good potential to be really funny, Deseret News
Woman Crush Wednesday: Utah Film Commissioner Virginia Pearce, Fox13
International-focused Tumbleweeds Film Festival is like 'Sundance for kids,' organizer says, KSL


Dwight in Shining Armor: Airing on BYUtv
Jane & Emma: Available on DVD and Digital
Little Women: Available on DVD and Digital
Time Freak: Available on DVD and Digital
Yellowstone: Available on Blu-Ray and DVD


Wasatch Mountain Film Festival: April 1-7
Utah Film Festival and Awards: April 5-6
Coffee with the Commish: April 10
Wildcast Film Festival: April 12
Utah High School Film Festival: April 23
Thunderbird Film Festival: April 26
Next Level Grant Program Round 2 Grantee Announcement: April 30

Check out the UFC Event Calendar
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