Film News

The governor signs off on incentives, leads chorus of dumb quotes

(l-r) Dennis Quaid, Hector Garcia, and Rick Perry
(l-r) Dennis Quaid, Hector Garcia, and Rick Perry (Photo By John Anderson)

Money, Money, Money

Follow the bouncing catchphrases from Gov. Rick Perry's signing of the $20 million film/television/video games incentives bill – another $2 million goes to a state film archive, crew-training programs, and administrative costs – last week at Austin Studios: Perry says he hopes "Texas will be the creative capital of the world, but for now, I'll settle for just not losing that to Louisiana." Not to be outdone, state Rep. Dawnna Dukes of Austin adds, "We've put out the welcome mat and declared Texas is open for business." Without a scriptwriter, actor Dennis Quaid declares his intent to move here in 21Ú2 years with, "I'd like this to be the new Hollywood." Whew. Meanwhile, on the same day, the city of Austin authorized handing over the $5 million in Austin Studios improvement funds approved by voters last year. It's earmarked for upgrades to soundproofing, air conditioning, and digital infrastructure.

Indie in Austin, indeed

Perry's staged event (read all about the incentives bill details in my previous column) came a day after indie film Periphery wrapped – for now – at Austin Studios. Producer Deepa Donde says she and her co-writer/director Duane Allen Humeyestewa came up with the idea while driving to New Mexico and narrowly missing hitting an illegal immigrant crossing from Mexico. The film involves four Phoenix teens who take a road trip to Mexico and get caught up in a pharmaceutical drug ring. "It's the concept of what it means to live in America along the border," says Donde, formerly a journalist for National Public Radio and a documentary producer for PBS. "People talk about the drug war, but in reality drugs are constantly smuggled into the U.S.; The cast includes Jesse Garcia, who recently won a best actor Alma Award for Quinceañera; Jess Weixler, who was last in Austin for Teeth; and Steven Grayhm of White Chicks. The film crew will be back soon for green-screen work using Robert Rodriguez's facilities. Regulars from Mr. R's crew, including shooters Jimmy Lindsey and Sebastian Vega, also bolstered the crew. Meanwhile, at Ranch Studios in Kyle, Texas, horror/thriller Deadly Obsession is shooting based on a script by director Shannon Richardson. Sherry Everett is producing, Michael Morlan is behind the camera, and Dominique Preyer is the music supervisor for the story with a Native American bent. The cast includes Zoe Simpson, Heath Allyn, Delno Ebie, and Judy Soars With Eagles.

And the rest ...

Kyle Henry's Room, starring Cyndi Williams, gets its television premiere at 10pm on Thursday, June 14, on the Sundance Channel. No worries if you read this too late; additional airings are on tap. Check The Texas Motion Picture Alliance will have its annual statewide meeting June 30 at 10am in the Ragsdale Center of St. Edward's University. The Austin region of TXMPA will meet June 18 at Mother Egan's Irish Pub, 715 W. Sixth, to choose a new Austin regional representative and discuss two at-large seats from the Austin region. RSVP to

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Texas film incentives legislation, Rick Perry, Dawnna Dukes, Periphery, Deepa Donde, Deadly Obsession, Shannon Richardson, Texas Motion Picture Alliance, Room, Kyle Henry

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