BR Film Commission head leaving

Donna Reichman, who took over as executive director of the Baton Rouge Film Commission just over a year ago, announced Thursday she is stepping away from the job.

In an email sent to colleagues and friends, Reichman said she is leaving the job Feb. 15.

Liza Kelso, assistant executive director, will act as executive director.

“It is with mixed emotions that I depart as I have thoroughly enjoyed working with each of you,” Reichman said in her email.

“It is my intention to continue to contribute to filmmaking in Baton Rouge.”

Repeated attempts by phone and email to contact Reichman were unsuccessful.

During Reichman’s time with the film commission, several big-budget productions were shot in the city, including the Tom Cruise science fiction action movie “Oblivion” and “The Host,” another sci-fi action feature, based on a novel written by “Twilight” author Stephenie Meyer. Both movies are set for release in the spring.

“I am pleased to share that a number of projects that I have been working on for many months are about to emerge on the slate for 2013, and hopefully beyond,” Reichman said in the email.

The commission also introduced an app, By Baton Rouge, that allows movie production crews to search for goods and services through a database of local vendors.

The goal was to get more local businesses to list themselves with the film commission, in the hopes of getting some movie business.

Reichman, 62, became executive director of the film commission in late 2011 after working for more than two decades in the production division with HBO Films. She served as a liaison between the production teams and HBO executives, working on more than 150 movies for the premium cable network.