Updated: Saturday, 21 Nov 2009, 11:54 PM MST
Published : Saturday, 21 Nov 2009, 11:54 PM MST
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - New Mexico’s film industry may soon have some tough competition from the West, as a $75 million film and TV studio is in the works outside of Phoenix.
“Arizona has everything that anybody could possibly need,” President Elect for the Arizona Production Association Dani Green said.
Arizona's first movie studio complex will cover 55 acres, and by 2012 it's expected to have four sound stages and huge back lots.
The director of New Mexico film office said she isn’t worried.
“I really don't subscribe to the ‘If you build they will come theory,'” Director of the New Mexico Film Office Lisa Strout said.
Strout said it takes more than a studio to make a state's film industry successful.
“I absolutely think we have a leg up on the competition," she said.
New Mexico already has a movie studio of its own. Albuquerque Studios is hugely successful and the state has a large and experienced film and TV crew base.
Unlike Arizona, the Land of Enchantment already has businesses stocked up with film equipment, wardrobe and props.
"Productions don't have to bring all of that equipment with them," Strout said. “It means everything to a producer; they're going to get their biggest bang for their buck.”
However, the soon to be built studio in Arizona has something New Mexico will never be able to offer. It sits only a six hour drive away from Los Angeles. That's what the Arizona developer is trying to capitalize on.
The biggest concern for Arizona is their film tax incentives will expire in 2010. Reports state that many are worried lawmakers will not want to continue those incentives because Arizona’s budget is in the red. That could be one big plus for New Mexico.
New Mexico currently offers a 25 percent credit for productions if they use in state crews, businesses and services, but the services have to be performed in New Mexico.
There have been 115 major film productions filmed in New Mexico since 2002. State taxes collected from film production activities in 2007 totaled $22.6 million.