COMMENTARY: The Best Towns in the US to Live and Work as a Moviemaker 2019

21 January 2019


COMMENTARY: The Best Towns in the US to Live and Work as a Moviemaker 2019

“The film business as we know it is never going back to Los Angeles,” director Joe Carnahan reportedly said during a recent press conference. “It’s a jump ball in terms of what the next big city that could build the industry is going to be.”

That sense, of the entire motion picture business thrown into the air and all of us waiting for it to come back down, is where we are at the close of 2018. The only thing we know for sure is that when the industry lands and is “rebuilt” it won’t look the same as before. Creative destruction will breed new power centers, with new players who’ve been underrepresented in the past, and new ways of imagining, making, and distributing a century-old product.

The sugar rush phase of this new reality is nearly a decade behind us already; in 2009 there were 44 states offering some form of incentive, but retrenchment has pared that down to 31 as of 2018. A new industry titan has emerged—Atlanta, Georgia—and some rival cities are being held in check by the disinterest of their state governments (looking at you, Lone Star State), while others make the right moves to become a regional powerhouse, such as our pick for #1 this year, Albuquerque, New Mexico. And how did we make it this far into the intro without mentioning Netflix? The true impact of this industry-shaking colossus won’t really be felt until rivals such as Disney copy its streaming first, theatrical maybe business model. 

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Image credit: Sobini Films & Ray Nomoto Robison

Contemplative empath who sees wonder in the curious world. Has a habit of hiding behind books and occasionally dabbles in games, Netflix and YouTube. Is permanently attached to bubble tea.