News @ Noon: Financial Incentives Bring Movies To Minnesota [AUDIO]
UNDATED - Minnesota is starting to do a better job trying to lure filmmakers to our state.
Minnesota Film and TV Executive Director Lucinda Winter says they're starting to see a shift in interest since they went live with their "snowbate" program last August. Last year the state legislature designated $10 million over two years for rebates to film companies.
Winter says Minnesota has a lot to offer when she makes her pitch to producers.
Winter says greater Minnesota is also diverse with the north shore, the north woods, and the prairie in the western parts of the state.
Two films are currently shooting in northeastern Minnesota, "Heart Of Wilderness" and "After the Reality". At least five more films are scheduled to begin - also in northeast Minnesota - later this year.
Winter says she didn't have any projects set for central Minnesota right now.
Five-million-dollars a year to attract film crews is still not much compared to other states. Winter says, New York for example, has a $300 million a year budget.
The Minnesota Film and TV Board works to attract movies, TV shows, commercials, documentaries, and music videos to be shot and filmed here.
Some popular movies that have been at least partly filmed in Minnesota include: "Fargo", "Ice Castles", "Might Ducks", "North Country", "Purple Rain", and "Grumpy Old Men".