Bennett of Kīhei Selected as New Maui County Film Commissioner

November 12, 2013, 5:02 PM HST · Updated November 12, 5:23 PM
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Filming of the Lifetime Channel movie, “The Blue Lagoon,” took place on Maui in 2012. The OED hopes to bring more productions to Maui through the Film Office. Photo: Director Mikael Salomon receives a blessing from Kimokeo Kapahulehua before the filming began. Image courtesy County of Maui.

Filming of the Lifetime Channel movie, “The Blue Lagoon,” took place on Maui in 2012. The OED hopes to bring more productions to Maui through the Film Office. Photo: Director Mikael Salomon receives a blessing from Kimokeo Kapahulehua before the filming began. Image courtesy County of Maui.

By Maui Now Staff

Tracy Bennett of Kīhei, Maui was selected as Maui’s new film commissioner, according to an announcement today from the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development.

Officials say Bennett is a 17-year veteran of the film industry, having worked as a Unit Still Photographer on the sets of several dozen major motion pictures, ranging in budgets from $2.5 to $150 million.

His resume includes work on “50 First Dates,” “Just Go With It,” “Grown Ups” 1 and 2, “Barbershop” 1 and 2, “Meet the Fockers,” “Armageddon,” “Remember the Titans,” “Legally Blonde,” “Get Smart,” “Dodgeball,” “Along Came Polly,” “Friday,” “Next Friday” and “Friday After Next,” according to information released by the Maui OED.

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“Maui is in a great position because of our new 25% tax incentive, brand new film studio and sound stage and the many settings that we offer both film and television,” said Bennett in a statement included in the OED press release. “I’m extremely motivated and excited to bring my experience, contacts and relationships to help expand a booming industry here,” he said.

“Like many other government film offices, I know our resources are limited. I will be working extra hard to bring our Maui County industry leaders together to collaborate and move our film industry forward. We need to pool our resources and use every available avenue to promote Maui’s film assets,” said Bennett.

Bennett was selected by Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa for the post after a search, interview, and vetting process conducted by a search committee that was appointed by the mayor.

“We really appreciate the fine work the committee did, and we want to thank them for their dedication. Tracy Bennett has the credentials to move this industry forward, and I look forward to having him on our team,” said Mayor Arakawa in the announcement.

In addition to his work in the film industry, the announcement states that Bennett also has “personal relationships with hundreds of film and studio executives, directors and actors including Adam Sandler, Ice Cube, Ben Stiller and Robert De Niro.” Bennett reportedly emphasized the importance of building on those relationships to “bring more film industry work to Maui County.”

Aside from his photography work, the announcement states that Bennett is also a producer on two feature-length films and a former professional kicker for the National Football League. His former teams reportedly included the Denver Broncos, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Dallas Cowboys, the announcement said.

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