Louisiana's film industry is dying.
Currently, in New Orleans there are only one TV show filming
in the home of Mardi-Gras. Meanwhile, in Atlanta there are over 30 different TV shows and movies currently filming in the Peach State. And it looks as though another popular show is leaving Louisiana and headed to Georgia.
According to reports, season two of Hap & Leonard
will film in Georgia after filming their first season in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Set in the late 1980's, Hap and Leonard is a darkly comic swamp noir of two best friends, one femme fatale, a crew of washed up revolutionaries, a pair of murderous psycho killers, some lost loot, and the fuzz. Hap & Leonard
features James Purefoy
, Michael Kenneth Williams
, and Jimmi Simpson. It is one of the most popular shows on Sundance TV and showcases an all-star cast.
This is the second show in the last month to leave Louisiana and move to Georgia. Just last week it was announced that WGN's most watched television series Underground
was going to film their second season in Savannah, Georgia.
So why are so many TV shows leaving Louisiana? Louisiana recently capped the filming incentives. It’s important to highlight that their filming incentives were capped, not canceled. In fact, the fund limit for TV shows and movies was set to $180 million a year, which still makes it among the most generous in the world.
However, despite having a large filming incentive, the number of crew jobs available in Louisiana have dropped 75% as crew workers are traveling to Atlanta, Georgia where their film tax credits are uncapped. So why did so many film crew workers leave Louisiana? According to a New Orleans film crew workers’ union partly attributed this to a perception
that the incentive had in fact been completely cancelled
the perception of a dying film industry can hurt not only the state’s film industry but the actors that live and work in that area. For example, when rumors surfaced that filming incentives in Louisiana were coming to an end, film crew workers immediately left NOLA and traveled to Atlanta. The risk of financial uncertainty is enough to scare away producers who are looking to get the most they can for their risky filmmaking investments. Consequently, when states make short term commitments to film tax credit programs, producers question the financial commitment and look elsewhere to film their productions.
If you're interested in learning more about film tax credits, read our guide here - Are Film Tax Credits Worth It?
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