By Adrianne Bee
San Francisco State University Alumni Magazine, Fall/Winter
camera crews are on location in Oakland, Zins is on call 24
hours a day to take care of production-related details.
the project, Zins spends a lot of time with SFSU alumni. A television
pilot co-produced by and starring Danny Glover, "The Law
and Mr. Lee," was filmed in Oakland over the summer. In
October filming began for "Black August," a movie
directed by another alumnus, Samm Styles.
are also a few alums in Zins' personal life. "We're a big
SF State family," she says. Zins' husband, her father and
her stepmother each hold SFSU degrees.
fell into her dream job by accident. Five years ago she was
teaching theatre at Laney College when she visited the Oakland
Film Office in search of internships for her students. Without
a coordinator, the office had nearly come to a standstill. Zins
offered to work on a part-time basis until the position was
her first industry trade show in Los Angeles, Zins ran into
Tom Rooker, a movie producer who had given up on the Oakland
film office after his repeated calls had gone unanswered. Zins
convinced him to reconsider. Filming was soon under way in Oakland
for Rooker and Clint Eastwood's movie, "True Crime."
a few months, Zins took on the position full-time. She has since
helped bring moviemakers to Oakland to film features including
"Haiku Tunnel," "The Hulk," and "The
There are perks -- like the time Zins was front-row when Santana
ended a video shoot with a five-hour impromptu concert. Still,
she says hanging out with the rich and famous isn't the best
part of her job. What she enjoys most of all is bringing business
guides cast and crew to local hotels, clubs and restaurants,
and asks that extra food from catering spreads be delivered
to city homeless shelters. Every day of filming in Oakland brings
in an estimated $42,000 in revenue for the city through permit
fees, equipment rentals, and money spent in local businesses.
benefits aren't always easy for residents to appreciate when
their driveways are blocked or the sound of simulated gunfire
is sailing overhead. Before shoots, Zins goes door to door with
volunteers to get residents' approval.
receive financial compensation for lost business and residents
are paid if shooting takes place on their property.
been exciting watching Oakland grow as part of the film community,"
Zins says. Her coworkers verify this. Zins is known for jumping
and shouting "Yes!" each time she hears a shoot is
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