Hollywood. Land of the stars, home to the famous and also known by many as the world capital of show business. This is where the entertainment industry, specifically the motion pictures industry was born and has resided ever since. Southern California and the “movies” have been just about as synonymous as peanut butter and jelly to this point, however, with rising costs of production, less than favorable tax benefits and just an overall desire to shoot somewhere new, more and more producers are starting to look elsewhere to film their big projects.
It is becoming increasingly difficult to continue to shoot films in California with some of the tax incentives now being offered in other states. Florida currently offers film producers tax incentives of up to 30% according to Florida Office of Film and Entertainment compared to California at 20%. Florida is still slightly behind states like Louisiana and Georgia, where filming is already growing exponentially year to year, however, with plenty of local star power of its own and preferable year-round weather conditions, Miami and South Florida might have a little more to offer going forward.
Director Adam Shankman’s 2012 “Rock of Ages” starring Tom Cruise was filmed and produced almost completely in South Florida while being set in California. According to Shankman in an interview with Miami New Times when referring to filming scenes on Hollywood’s famous Sunset Strip, “I couldn’t close it down for six weeks, which is what I really needed. So I looked all over the world, and [Miami] ended up being really the only game in town.”
A large portion of the Marvel Studio’s blockbuster smash “Iron Man 3″ was also filmed in and around Miami as well as “Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters.” Television shows such as “Burn Notice,” “Magic City,” “The Glades,” and even ABC’s “Charlie’s Angels,” are among many others that are to be or have been filmed down here recently.
Shooting in Florida used to detract directors and producers in the past because of the unpredictable weather patterns we experience, specifically the difference in day to day natural lighting produced from inconsistent overcast. Nowadays, modern technology and software can eliminate many of those problems making it easier to shoot a film outdoors.
To push the matter going forward, multiple movie production studios have been approved to be built in South Florida. Just last month, ground broke on a new $11.5 million 70,000 square foot movie studio in the “Media and Entertainment District” located just north of downtown next to the Adrienne Arscht center. According to Miami commissioner Marc Sarnoff, the studio “will go a long way in securing Miami’s status as a top destination for film and television production.”