If you watched the Emmys last night you undoubtedly became aware of Temple Grandin -- even if you don't have HBO (like certain lowly New Times staff writers).
Grandin is a woman with autism, who happens to also have a PhD in animal science from Arizona State University and is a professor at the University of Colorado. She was the focus of an HBO movie featuring Claire Danes, who won an Emmy for the role last night.
Grandin's story is pretty incredible -- she's been able to lead an incredible life despite the challenges of her disease. Aside from her achievements in the world of agriculture, she's provided tremendous insight into autism research. Read a little bit about her here.
A lot of the film takes place in Arizona -- prior to, and during her
studies at ASU -- so you might think the Grand Canyon State's economy
may have received a boost from a big-budget movie being filmed here.
Well, think again because the movie was filmed exclusively in Texas.
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A number of movies (like 3:10 to Yuma,
which was filmed in New Mexico) supposedly based in Arizona were filmed
elsewhere because other states offer tax incentives for studios to film
When a big studio comes to any town to film a movie, it brings with it hundreds of people who spend money at local businesses. With all the cool stories -- and incredible scenery -- that Arizona offers the cinematic world, the state is missing out on some serious cash when they film those stories elsewhere.
There have been several efforts to get state government to offer tax incentives comparable to states like California and New Mexico for studios to film movies here -- including one last year that was brushed aside by legislators trying to solve the state's budget crisis.
Mesa is in the process of building a studio capable of producing large-scale movies, but without the necessary tax incentives, the studio could go to waste.