Actor Dennis Quaid thinks Texas should become the ‘movie capital of the world’.
The famous actor made his pitch for the Lone Star State to become the new Tinseltown during a appearance on Jessie Watters Primetime as legislation to boost film and TV production in the state will be submitted to the Texas Legislature.
New bills propose offering tax breaks to production companies that choose to film in Texas in an effort to revive the state’s industry and bring back business from neighboring states, including New Mexico, Oklahoma and Louisiana.
California, home to Hollywood, has also seen an exodus of people to Texas since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of whom worked in the tech industry. Some Texans are now hoping that a similar trend will hit the movie industry, as many have fled south to escape skyrocketing costs on the coast.
Quaid also appeared in a video last week with other Texas actors, including Woody Harrelson and Mathew McConaughey, to advocate for the economic boost that movie production would bring to Texas cities and towns.
Dennis Quaid made his pitch for Texas to become the ‘new movie capital of the world’ during an appearance on Jessie Watters Primetime
Actor Dennis Quaid has said that Texas should become the “movie capital of the world” and that a lack of incentive had driven production crews to surrounding states like New Mexico, Oklahoma and Georgia.
The video was published by Good for Texas, a group that “gathers the support of celebrities, influencers and the community to bring the movie industry back to Texas.”
In a four-minute video released on YouTube Thursday, Quaid, Harrelson, McConaughey, Billy Bob Thornton, Owen Wilson and Glen Powell all advocate boosting movie production in Texas.
In a call to action, the various actors argued that over the past decade, a lack of adequate incentives has driven movie production to neighboring states like New Mexico, Louisiana, Georgia and Oklahoma.
“Shows that are supposed to be happening here in Texas are having a hard time getting the resources they need to start filming,” Quaid said during the video.
During his appearance on Jesse Watters Primetime, Quaid said that Texas historically had a huge movie industry that was smothered by bad policies.
“About nine or 10 years ago I made great movies there and I love working there,” he told Watters.
“We want to make Texas the movie capital of the world. That’s what Texas really used to have: a great movie incentive program and a great film crew,” said Quaid.
He also suggested that the change that caused many tech companies to move to Texas from California could be reflected in the film industry.
Mathew McConaughey was one of the Texans who appeared in a YouTube video published by Good for Texas, a group that “gathers support from celebrities, influencers and the community to bring the movie industry back to Texas.” He is depicted in a still from the video
Chunks of Silicon Valley have been transplanted to Texas after the pandemic, and some Texans want the movie industry similarly affected
Harrelson also appeared in the short video, intended to garner support as a number of bills must go to the Texas legislature.
“Texas has done a very good job of moving much of the technology industry out of Silicon Valley. You go to Austin and you can see that very clearly. And the same can be done with movies and TV shows. It’s a great place to shoot,” he said.
“It would bring back a lot of people who moved to other states, like Oklahoma, New Mexico, Louisiana, actually around Texas, and Georgia,” he said. “They have these incentive programs and have taken away our crew base. Most of those places don’t even have an ocean.’
When asked about California’s relevance to modern filmmaking, the actor told Watters that the high cost of filming there makes the state increasingly irrelevant.
“I can’t remember the last time I made a movie in California to tell you the truth. You know, they’re still doing their game shows and talk shows and stuff there,’ he said.
“Everyone is filming in Georgia or Oklahoma because it doesn’t matter where it takes place because it’s cheaper,” Quaid added. “They get 30 to 40 percent of their money back there through tax credits.”
“There is currently legislation in the Texas State House to increase that fund to make it more business-friendly to make movies in Texas,” Quaid said.
HB4199 seeks to provide “additional funding opportunities” to the film industry by ensuring that film and TV production-related events qualify for reduced state taxes.
The bill is one of more than a dozen that aim to make Texas more attractive to the movie industry.
That reports the Hollywood Reporter, the states surrounding Texas saw more than $1.5 billion in TV and movie production. Under the Texas proposal, productions could receive a tax credit of up to 42.5 percent of spending in the state, excluding wages.
That figure would be much higher than other states, with the second highest being Louisiana, which offers up to 40 percent in tax credits.
Quaid argued that filmmaking was especially valuable to the Texas economy because it affects a number of industries, including hotels and construction. Pictured is a movie set in Texas
Owen Wilson was another star who appeared in the Good for Texas video, which came out last week
The recent pressure is also prompted by the fact that a number of critically acclaimed TV shows, such as “The Chosen” and Taylor Sheridan’s “1883,” a Yellowstone spin-off, have demonstrated just how valuable Texas movie productions can be.
Quaid argued that filmmaking was especially valuable to the Texas economy because it affects a number of industries, including hotels and construction.
Movies are also often produced in rural areas and small towns can see huge investments for their small population.
“Remember the gold rush in California, you know? It’s like a few people struck it rich, but the people who actually made money were the shopkeepers and people who sold shovels and shovels and things like that and did things other than mine gold,” Quaid said.
“That’s about to happen here.”