Springtime in the Midwest means slightly less snow, hopefully more flowers, and movie crews rolling into town. We kicked off Changing Gears with several stories about the region’s efforts to attract movies to film here. Well, the movie buzz is back, although there are some questions about how long our film incentives may continue, given the poor economy.
Nonetheless, it’s finally warm enough to film in the Midwest again, and in several cities the cameras are already rolling.
Southern Ohioans from Oxford to Cincinnati were snapping cell phone pix of George Clooney and Ryan Gosling as they filmed “The Ides of March” in late February and early March. The movie looks at a mythical presidential campaign, and has an award winning cast, including Marisa Tomei, Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Giamatti.
There also have been plenty of Clooney and Gosling sightings in Ann Arbor and Detroit, where a building on Griswold Street is serving as the fictional candidate’s campaign headquarters. If you’re in Michigan, and hoping for a peak at the film’s stars, there is a complete list of filming locations over the nest few weeks here.
Fear not, Ohioans. George Clooney and his crew may have moved on, but “The Avengers” has announced it will be filming in Cleveland. Ohio’s tax credits have been credited with attracting the Marvel studios movie, the second one filmed in Cleveland since parts of Spider-Man III were shot on Euclid Avenue.
It looks like Michigan might not get as many celebrity sightings in the future. Governor Rick Snyder has proposed capping the amount of tax credits given to movie studios to film there. He said the state isn’t getting enough in return for the tax break, about 30 cents to the dollar. Supporters of the tax credit the big gain is in temporary jobs.
Illinois also got a bit of bad movie news recently. Chicago will not be playing the ever important role of Gotham City in the upcoming Batman film “The Dark Knight Rises.” It lost that honor to Pittsburgh.
However, Chicago still played host to the cast and crew of Transformers: Dark of the Moon, which was filmed last summer and is scheduled to hit theaters July 1. The Fox show, The Chicago Code, has been shooting there and a new Starz TV show, “Boss,” starting Kelsey Grammar will also be filmed in the Windy City.