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Home » Featured Career for June 2024: Office Production Assistant
Featured Film Career June 2024

Featured Career for June 2024: Office Production Assistant

Kourtney Hawkins works locally as a 2nd 2nd Assistant Director, Walkie Production Assistant, Health & Safety Production Assistant and Office Production Assistant for film and television productions in the Sooner State. She has worked on various productions, including “Fairwood,” “Tulsa King,” “Cricket” and “Faculty Lounging.”  Additionally, she has experience working as a Unit Production Manager and Producer for a documentary short.

How did you get started in the film industry?

I have prior work experience in the news industry as a Camera Operator for News 9. Additionally, I spent five years working in the front offices of major production houses in Los Angeles, California. In February 2022, after a 12-year stint working in Corporate America, I was encouraged to take a leap of faith and pursue this dream full time.

Did you have any formal education or training related to the film industry before starting?   

I earned a Bachelor of Arts in Broadcast Production from the University of Central Oklahoma. 

Did you have any formal education or training related to your specific department on-set?  

In November 2020, I completed the Set Ready Course hosted by The Filmmakers Ranch. #SLATE3 #IYKYK. I have also completed an Assistant Directing Course and earned certifications in Movie Magic Budgeting, Movie Magic Scheduling, Production Accounting 101 and Production Accounting 201. To develop my writing skills, I enrolled in a Masterclass taught by Shonda Rhimes titled “Writing for Television.” And I have taken a few Creative Writing courses with Matt Payne. 

What are some of your most recent successes (credits or accolades) related to your career in the industry? 

I worked as a Health and Safety Production Assistant for “Tulsa King.” My job was to keep everyone safe and healthy, but this position allowed me to lead individuals to different departments in a big studio. As the first point of contact for anyone walking into the building, I had an important role.

Another rewarding experience was working on the film “Cricket.”  I was responsible for all communication within the production and got to work closely with the Assistant Directing team.

What has your career in the state’s film industry taught you?

Dreams become reality. Keep going. Don’t underestimate your skill set. The best Is yet to come!

What is the highlight of your career thus far?

The thrill of working on set still captivates me, and I cherish the new friendships I’ve made. Each project has provided valuable insight into the industry.

What is your favorite aspect of working in Oklahoma’s film and television industry? 

Being able to see the creative vision come to life.

What’s the best piece of advice you have for someone starting their career in Oklahoma’s film industry?

Networking is crucial. Most of my job opportunities have come from industry colleagues. Also treat people how you would want to be treated.

How does someone in your field/department best promote/market themselves to those hiring in your industry?

It’s important to connect with people who share your interests and goals. Networking can help you improve your skills and knowledge in your field. Even if you meet someone who is not on the same career path as you, they may be able to introduce you to individuals who are.

Are there any local film organizations, resources or events that have been beneficial to you in your career?

Recently I attended the Film and Music Day at the Capitol for the first time, and it was truly an eye-opening experience to see all the local companies involved in the industry that are local to Oklahoma. Each year, the deadCenter Film Festival always has at least one or two film selections that I look forward to viewing. Additionally, the deadCenter Filmmakers Panel is an excellent resource that I always look forward to. The panels and panelists are very informative. And they are FREE!

What’s the one item you can’t live without on-set, and why? 

My backpack! It has everything in it that I need to get the job done. Ex. My laptop, snacks, water, highlighters, etc. It’s my Stay Ready Kit! It was something that I learned in The Set Ready Course.

Would your career be impacted without the state’s film incentive program? If so, how?

My career would be impacted to a great degree. Increased incentives could attract more film and television production to the state, creating additional job opportunities.

Where do you see yourself – AND – Oklahoma’s film industry in the next five years? 

The film and television industry in Oklahoma has experienced substantial growth in recent years. After completing my college degree and working briefly at News 9, I moved to Hollywood and stayed there for five years. When I returned, I was pleasantly surprised to see how much things had changed. I hope that this growth will continue at an even faster pace so that there is a steady flow of new projects, and we don’t have to constantly search for the next big thing. As a writer, there is nothing I would love more than to see the four projects that I have written come to life on one of our local sound stages.

What are you working on now or next?

Currently, I am not working on any projects, but I hope to find new opportunities soon.

Each featured individual or business is given the provided questions to answer in their own voice. Other than formatting and grammar, the answers are personal to each featured voice, and are not provided by the Oklahoma Film + Music Office.

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