EUGENE, Ore. -- Getting movies filmed in Oregon can be a tricky business: dozens of states across the country offer financial incentives to get filmmakers there.
Now some Oregon lawmakers are trying to make Oregon more attractive for the silver screen.
Oregon House Bill 2167 would extend tax incentives for filmmakers in Oregon through 2017 and add to the amount of money available to fund those incentives.
Here's how it works:
When film companies come to Oregon, they receive tax breaks for filming in the state.
Then, the film companies can sell those tax incentives to Oregon companies for cash, and those local companies can use them during tax season.
State Representative Patrick Sheehan, R-Clackamas, calls it one of the best tax incentive bills he's ever seen.
"I'm not a huge fan of tax credits. I love this bill. I think this is employing a ton of local people wherever they happen to be," said Sheehan.
The Beaver State is no stranger to the cinema:
- "Twilight," "The Goonies," "Kindergarten Cop," and "Coraline" all have ties to Oregon.
- Clint Eastwood sang on film in 1969's "Paint Your Wagon," filmed outside Baker City, Ore.
- Customers still order eggs in "the Jack Nicholson" booth in Eugene.
- Last year, Brownsville celebrated the 25th anniversary of the filming of "Stand By Me."
"These film productions bring in all kinds of production talents and revenues from the outside that there's a lot of spending in the community by the people coming from the outside," said Richard Herskowitz, Cinema Pacific Film Festival Director and self-described movie buff.
"But even more importantly, they give employment to people here when the film is made," he said.
A report from the Governor's Office of Film and Television found the television and film industry brought in 6,325 full- and part-time jobs in Oregon in 2007.
However, some say adding millions to the state budget to get movies here is irresponsible, given Oregon's current economic woes.
"Right now, given our financial position, and the fact that we're closing schools and changing prison sentences and stuff like that, we think that the first choice would be to suspend the program temporarily," said Jody Wiser from grassroots organization Tax Fairness Oregon.
The bill next heads to the Ways and Means Committee in the House, where lawmakers will decide if the state can afford it.
"I really want to make sure that the film industry is continuing to grow as it has been, and I hate the thought of it being cut off because of loss of these rebates," said Herskowitz.