Baton Rouge tops list for filmmakers to live, work in 2015

Baton Rouge tops list for filmmakers to live, work in 2015

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A film magazine has named Baton Rouge the top city for filmmakers to live and work in 2015, according to its website

Baton Rouge topped MovieMaker Magazine's ranking for cities with a population from 100,000 to 400,000. New Orleans was second on that list.

In the article, it points out that Baton Rouge hosted more than $200 million in film and TV production in 2014, including an updated version of Marvel's Fantastic Four, Pitch Perfect 2, The Final Girls, TV's NCIS: New Orleans, and the independent feature film Zipper with Patrick Wilson and Richard Dreyfuss.

Moviemaker said one of the main factors behind Baton Rouge's top ranking was Louisiana's generous current tax incentives, 30 percent on direct Louisiana production expenditures, and an additional five percent for payroll expenditures—with no annual cap and a $300,000 minimum spend,
but also noted that the Baton Rouge Film Commission also played an important role.

"The Baton Rouge Film Commission often secures crew members and partners with the production to find local crews, keeping stipend spending down," the Moviemaker article said. "City-owned properties do not charge location fees—for example, the now vacant Women's Hospital, owned by the city, has been used for several productions which only had to pay for security and utilities."

Another major factor was Baton Rouge's Celtic Media Centre, the largest studio of its kind in the state, which features seven sound stages that range from 15,000 to 35,000 square feet.

Mayor Kip Holden says three film projects started work this month and that he's working to bring more long-term television programs to the city.

Copyright 2015 WAFB. All rights reserved.