News @ Noon: Program Created to Lure Hollywood Productions to Minnesota
UNDATED - Sightings of Hollywood stars are suddenly more easy to come by in Minnesota. Actors Woody Harrelson and Laura Dern are filming the movie "Wilson" in the Twin Cities right now.
Troy Parkinson is from the Minnesota Film and TV Board. He says last year the State Legislature allocated $10 million to the "snowbate" program, to help lure more production projects.
He says they're also hoping to bring in a TV pilot.
There's an HBO pilot in development right now called "Stillwater". We've worked with the director on that and the writer who are very interested in shooting in Minnesota. So we've been working with the city of Stillwater, the CVB, and really trying to position ourselves so we can be strong. But it all really depends on that incentive.
Also, this fall a Netflix TV series will begin shooting in Duluth.
One of the exciting things that's going to be shooting up in Duluth in the fall is Netflix just announced a TV series with comedian Maria Bamford, who is from Duluth. They're currently shooting in L.A., but they're going to be shooting segments in Minnesota. So, that will be a Netflix series that will be in Duluth.
The snowbate program gives projects 20-25 percent cash back on expenditures. The money can be used on everything from feature films, to documentaries, to music videos.
However, the $10 million Minnesota has to lure production companies pales in comparison to other states. For example, California has over $300 million for a similar program.