Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Filming Louisiana: North and South go head to head.
Shreveport, La., turns into 'Hollywood South'
Click the Link above to see MSNBC Story on "Hollywood South" from November 28, 2006.
Shreveport has come a long way since Hurricane Katrina. It is sad that it took a Natural disaster to make North Louisiana a destination for the film industry. Now in 2010, the film industry is not exactly knocking on Shreveport's door. With Super finishing up what they started in Late 2009, and Six Month Rule filming, there is only one other film Drive Angry that has a production office in Shreveport to date. There a few productions slated but no one in Louisiana can compete with the over 30 films going South. Big productions like Green Lantern, Blood Out and Red all in pre-production in South Louisiana are leaving smaller budget films to set up productions in the North.
What is it that South Louisiana has that North Louisiana does not? Well for starters, direct flights to Los Angeles and New York, a variety of choices of Studios and who does not want to work in New Orleans? What North Louisiana does have is "no red tape" for filming. Shreveport bends over backwards for productions like free city water, free permits, lower cost of living, they will close a street with short notice and they also have added incentives for filming above the States 30%. The crew base is pretty good in Shreveport also but without multiple productions going at the same time many crew and services have headed south for non-stop work. Bottom line is that it is easy to film in Shreveport and cost less, but filming in the South lends to the better quality of life while you are there.
One thing is for sure, if North Louisiana can pick up the pace at which it brings productions into Louisiana it could be a force to reckon with. This year will be the tale of the tape. 30% incentives are in place with additional incentives for filming in Shreveport, Caddo Parish and Jefferson Parish, which now means it is time for the Film offices to bring as many films to the region as they can. New Orleans will have no problem filling their schedule and Baton Rouge is not doing to bad. Smaller markets like Lake Charles, Lafayette, Alexandria, and Shreveport need to make a move to become a big player in the crazy game of Movie Making.