It appears the NBA lockout has cost Oklahoma City a date with Hollywood. The bulk of filming for the feature-length Warner Bros. film that Thunder forward Kevin Durant has agreed to star in will be filmed in Baton Rouge, La. rather than OKC.The entire project couldn’t be shot in Oklahoma City because of a snag with state incentives for film production. The state of Oklahoma offers a 37 percent rebate for companies filming in the state, but the Oklahoma Film & Music Office had already run out of funding for this fiscal year. The state of Louisiana does not have a cap on tax credits.
Continue reading at newsok.com
A scene from 'The Addams Family' musical, which premieres in New Orleans on Sept. 15.
To boost the local economy, state government officials have set their sights on an unlikely industry: theater. And the ongoing effort to develop the local theater industry takes a big step forward when "The Addams Family" kicks off its national tour Sept. 15 at Mahalia Jackson Theater in New Orleans.The production will be the first to take advantage of Louisiana's Live Performance Tax Credit, which rewards traveling shows for beginning their tours in the state.
New Orleans is already a stop for many traveling shows, which tour the country spending a few nights or weeks in various markets. But the economic benefit of having a traveling show make its premiere in the city is even greater, because crews arrive weeks before the tour begins to tweak sets and rehearse. In the process, the crew spends money locally, patronizes Louisiana vendors and sometimes hires local workers.
Continue reading at NOLA.com
Local convenience store Country Corner on Perkins Road was temporarily shut down last week for the filming of next year's action film "The Philly Kid."
The film chronicles fictional wrestler turned ultimate fighter Dylan McCabe's path to recovery after 10 years in prison.
Jason Connery, known for thrillers such as "Brotherhood of Blood" and "Urban Ghost Story," is directing the film starring Wes Chatham, who will also appear in this year's much anticipated film "The Help."
The film is being produced by After Dark Films, a company that has frequented Louisiana recently with other thrillers like "Dark Circles." Both productions are scheduled to be released next year.
"The Philly Kid" is one of three action-packed films being filmed in and around Baton Rouge this summer.
New director Eduardo Rodriguez is directing a murder mystery entitled "Stash House" in Baton Rouge, which will star Sean Faris, known for his roles in "Pearl Harbor" and "Never Back Down."
The fourth installment in the science fiction series "Universal Soldier: A New Dimension" is also scheduled to film in the city.
In other Louisiana cities like Shreveport and New Orleans, there are more than 20 other movies in production, including "Later Favor," starring Bruce Willis.
Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel and Uma Thurman are also staring in next year's romantic comedy "Playing the Field."
This relationship between Baton Rouge and the film industry is nothing new.
Continue reading at LSURevielle.com
Louisiana ranks third in film and television production nationwide, behind only California and New York.
Yet, the growing number of productions filmed in the Bayou State — more than 300 in the past five years — has essentially bypassed our region.
Local filmmakers Rodney and Jill Ray think it's time to change that.
The Rays, currently filming "New Hope" in Monroe, want to show other production companies the assets they have encountered with their filmmaking — great locations, community volunteers, cooperative governmental agencies, a growing group of local professionals and lower production costs.
They know we need to have production-ready resources here and have set about to develop some. They have trained their own staff for RSquared Productions, and even hosted a film festival and workshops this spring to interest others, particularly students, in learning production techniques. They have assisted others, including teachers of script-writing classes, in other aspects of the filmmaker's art.
According to an economic impact study produced for the Louisiana Department of Economic Development, the state's tax incentive program for the entertainment industry has resulted in a growing annual economic impact, measured at $710 million in 2009 and jumping to $1.08 billion in 2010.
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Joe and Jim Hanna
MANDEVILLE, La — Joe Hanna, owner of Hanna Brothers Film & Event Catering and his brother Jim Hanna, a former New Orleans Saints Football Player, built a 10,000 square foot commissary facility as their home base for their film catering business in Slidell, La in 2004.
In 1997, they purchased some older equipment and bid low on jobs, until they were able to develop relationships and grow their reputation in the film industry to what it is in Louisiana today.
“We will stay here indefinitely, unless they take the tax credit away, it would cripple the industry,” said Jim Hanna.
The tax incentives are a win, win situation for both the State of Louisiana, as well as all in the film industry who have come here to benefit, said Jim Hanna.
“The Legislation is doing a good thing, tax incentives make it worth while for production companies to come here. Major studios have to crunch numbers in this economy, and find that they can do it for less in Louisiana,” said Jim HannaContinue reading here
BATON ROUGE (NBC33) - — A new tax credit for the Louisiana Film Industry died in the House Ways and Means committee Thursday after dozens of locals in the business told lawmakers, they don’t want the money.
The small business owners said the bill requirements are set too high, and would give California companies an advantage over smaller, Louisiana grown companies.
Senate Bill 264, by President Joel Chaisson, a Democrat, will not advance any further in the Louisiana Legislature this session.
Continue reading at NBC33
Ryan Reynolds in 'Green Lantern'
"Green Lantern," which opens in theaters Thursday at midnight, is big business, both for Warner Bros. -- the studio behind the film -- and for Louisiana's film industry.
For its part, the studio has shelled out in the neighborhood of $150 million on what it hopes will be Hollywood's next big superhero franchise, and the film on which the first part of its summer movie season is hinged. ("Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2" lands next month, the second part of the studio's impressive one-two punch.)
Of that $150 million, some $113 million -- about 75 percent -- was spent in Louisiana, according to Chris Stelly, director of the state's film office. That gives "Green Lantern" the title of biggest feature film ever shot in the state, both in terms of dollars spent in-state and in terms of money paid out by the Louisiana filmmaking tax-incentives program. (The previous record-holder: 2008's "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," which also had a budget in the neighborhood of $150 million but which spent a larger chunk in other locations and which shot before the state sweetened the tax-incentives program in 2009.)
It also means the state is heavily invested in the film, to the tune of an estimated $34.9 million in tax credits offered to lure the project here, according to the state film office. Despite what critics of filmmaking tax incentives say, Stelly and the program's supporters insist it's money well spent. Not only does much of that money get plowed back into the state economy, but a film with as high a profile as "Green Lantern" is a feather-in-the-cap kind of production that has a way of begetting more film projects.
"I think with a film like 'Green Lantern' and the size and the potential it has for sequels or prequels or whatever they're calling for, I think it really shows the diversity in locations that Louisiana can do," Stelly said. "Louisiana can do Louisiana really well, but guess what? We can do other places really well. So there's that diversity in location. We can do the major tentpole pictures. There's no reason that any other picture can't be shot in Louisiana."Reynolds states, "I love New Orleans. New Orleans is a second home for me, so being there was fantastic."Continue reading at NOLA.com
This is an older article I found from USA Today in August 2010 about the film industry in Louisiana. It's still a great read and everyone should check it out!
"Even before the economic recession hit Hollywood, the state of Louisiana had been quietly gaining stature as the place to make quality movies and stretch dollars. "We have the largest number of productions outside of Los Angeles and New York City," says Chris Stelly, director of film for Louisiana Entertainment, a division of the state office of economic development.
The consummate versatile character actor, Louisiana has also played Utah, Washington, D.C., and London. "The film industry wants to find places it can reinvent and make look like anything it needs," Lussier says. "There's a lot of opportunity do that in Louisiana."
Movies shooting in Louisiana range from mega-budget blockbusters to quirky indies. Films shot this year include testosterone-fueled action-adventure The Expendables, which opens Aug. 13, and the comic book-inspired The Green Lantern, due in 2011. The low-budget horror film The Last Exorcism opens Aug. 27, and the big-screen version of the 1960s TV show The Big Valley arrives next year."
Continue reading at usatoday.com
“Treme” filming on location in New Orleans
Celebrity sightings around New Orleans are becoming almost commonplace as the city attracts more and more film production business, and that must be a good thing. The chance of glimpsing a movie star on the street surely adds to New Orleans’ allure. But according to a recent report, the benefits of our rising star power go well beyond celebrity autographs.“Louisiana’s flagship incentive program has been a catalyst for substantial film production growth statewide,” consultant Cheryl Louise Baxter said in the report. During the period 2008-’10, about 92 films per year qualified for the tax incentives, almost triple the annual number that received the credits during the first six years of the program.
Baxter said that total spending by film producers in Louisiana also rose sharply during that same period, to a 2010 estimated total of $674 million. (Last year’s direct payroll spending by producers to Louisiana employees hit more than $5 million, according to the report.)
Among the Louisiana-shot feature films of 2010 were local productions that included the Mark Wahlberg and Kate Beckinsale thriller Contraband (set for a ’12 release), and the action comedy Red featuring Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren and Mary-Louise Parker.
Some 20 features currently under way in the state include the New Orleans productions Cogan’s Trade, starring part-time New Orleans resident Brad Pitt; 21 Jump Street, featuring Johnny Depp; and Medallion, starring Nicolas Cage.
Our burgeoning film industry is still in its youth and only beginning to establish its permanence with the studios, sound stages and support structure that help ensure long-term business and better jobs. Eventually, activity may expand to the point where it’s clear that we have a “real” local film industry. Until then, New Orleans may have to content itself with enjoying those celebrity sightings and knowing that our star is likely on the rise.
Continue reading at myneworleans.com
Since the mid 2000’s, Louisiana has been dubbed “Hollywood of the South.” But filmmakers have long been fascinated with Louisiana. By 1898, the film industry recognized that Louisiana’s diverse landscape, history, architecture and culture provided a great backdrop for films.
Over the years, film studios expanded the use of Louisiana into every genre, time period and location imaginable. From swamps to plantations, metropolitan cities to western plains, and yes, even other planets.
Hollywood on the Bayou has documented over 1,000 films that were made in or about Louisiana. These include feature length films, made-for-tv movies, documentaries and shorts. It covers six specific time periods of Louisiana film history (1898-2010). After a brief narration, the films are listed by title, year, director and other information. An alphabetical listing by title follows.
Continue reading at 225alive.com