BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - After a sluggish 2016, the film industry is getting back to business in Louisiana.
The latest production to add to the growing roster is the television series "Marvel's Cloak & Dagger," which began filming in the New Orleans area this week.
"It is my honor to welcome Marvel and its production team to our great state," Gov. Edwards said. "Since 2002, Louisiana has been the location destination for more than $6 billion in film and TV production. Disney's continuation of a long relationship with Louisiana and our crews, soundstages and locations comes as great news for the television industry professionals who work here, and for our resourceful vendors who supply and equip film and TV productions so well."
According to a press release, "Marvel's Cloak & Dagger" chronicles the adventures of Tyrone "Ty" Johnson and Tandy Bowen, teens from different backgrounds who find themselves falling in love while being burdened by, and awakened to, newly acquired superpowers. They soon learn that they are better together than apart – but their feelings for each other make their already-complicated world even more challenging.
The characters first appeared in Peter Parker The Spectacular Spider-Man comic book series in 1982, and debuted in their own publication in 1984.
"Louisiana delivers the perfect creative landscape for 'Marvel's Cloak & Dagger' as well as providing exceptional resources for production talent and a business-friendly environment," said Jeph Loeb, executive producer and Marvel's head of television.
This projects marks a significant rebound from the 2016 slump, which hit local production studios hard.
"Business in Baton Rouge was down 93 percent in 2016 from what it was in 2015. So that gives you an indicator of just how bad things were," said Celtic's executive director, Patrick Mulhearn.
Industry insiders blame last year's slowdown in business on changes to Louisiana's film tax credit. More specifically, state officials say misinformation about the tax credit changes made filmmakers wary. With the announcement of Marvel's commitment, officials took the opportunity to sooth fears.
"Louisiana's incentive program, our crew base, infrastructure, locations and film-ready communities are exceptional assets available to the television and film industry," LED Secretary Don Pierson said. "We know Marvel had the ability to consider other locations, and due to their confidence in all the things we have to offer, they have wisely chosen Louisiana. LED will work hard to ensure that they continue to have a best-in-class production experience here in Louisiana. Our goal is to remain the state of choice for these projects."
"As a trailblazer in the film industry, Louisiana continues to offer a first-class film and television incentive, and we remain an unrivaled location for production," Louisiana Entertainment Executive Director Chris Stelly said. "We're proud that Marvel recognizes the complete package that this state offers. This series will be a welcome addition to our ever-expanding canon of work."