Canada Plays the Part of Minnesota…AGAIN.

March 21, 2008

Chilled in Miami,” a romantic comedy about a Miami business woman who moves to a small Minnesota town, recently concluded photography in Winnipeg, Canada. Once again a Canadian city is cast as Minnesota. Renee Zelweger and Harry Connick Jr. star this time. Coming on the heals of “Juno” (filmed in British Columbia) and “Leatherheads” (shot in the Carolinas), “Chilled” begs the question “Why isn’t Minnesota competitive as a location for films set in Minnesota?”

The exchange rate is currently at par. And Minnesota looks exactly like Minnesota. More like Minnesota than any other place, in fact.

The problem is the huge incentives offered by Canadian provinces, often as much as 45% compared to Minnesota’s 15% Snowbate program. The Canadians continue to up the ante in order to hang onto the slice of the production pie they gained when the exchange rate was a key factor. Now they have skilled and experience crews, too.

It will take more than the modest Snowbate incentives to earn back a significant share of northern tier film production. The legislature and other units of government should find creative new ways to encourage production and keep Minnesota film crews working and paying taxes.


Older Than America Trailer Available on YouTube

March 18, 2008

A trailer for Minnesota-produced “Older than America” is now available on YouTube. The film was shot in Cloquet, Minnesota, during November and December, 2006. See my previous “Older” posts at

Clooney and Zellweger Visit Duluth to Promote “Leatherheads”

March 18, 2008

The Minneapolis Star Tribune is reporting that George Clooney and Renee Zellweger will visit Duluth, Minnesota, as part of press tour to promote “Leatherheads.” The film, a sports/screwball comedy, is about a 1920’s era football team called the Duluth Bulldogs. While set in Minnesota and Chicago, the film was shot in North and South Carolina.

“Leatherheads” is scheduled to open nationwide on April 4.

Read the MST article at:

The film’s official web site is at:

My previous posts on Leatherhead are available at:

“Older Than America” Screens at “Women With Vision”

March 5, 2008

Minnesotans will have an opportunity to see “Older than America,” the Minnesota-produced feature, when it opens the Women With Vision Film Festival this weekend. Shot in Cloquet, Minnesota, in November and December 2008, “Older” is being promoted as a suspenseful contemporary drama.

Director Georgina Lightning, producer Christine Walker and actress Tantoo Cardinal are scheduled to appear.

It screens Friday, March 7, at 7:30 p.m. at the Walker Art Center. Tickets and information are available by calling 612.375.7600 or visiting

“Older Than America” at South By Southwest Film Festival

February 18, 2008

Minnesota-produced “Older Than America” will screen at this year’s South by Southwest Film Festival (March 11-15). It will compete with eight other films in the Narrative Feature competition. The film was shot in and around Cloquet, Minnesota, and the on the nearby Fond du Lac Reservation in November and December of 2006.

Read my previous post about “Older than America” at

Click here for festival screening times for “Older than America.”

Duluth Short Shorts Film Festival Call for Entries

January 16, 2008
Filmmakers are invited to participate in the third annual Duluth Short Shorts Film Festival. It will take place on February 23, 2008. The competition is open to films five minutes long or shorter. Entries must be received by Friday, February 15, along with a $15 entry fee. First, second and third place films win cash prizes of $250, $150 and $100 respectively.
Films screen at the Play Ground performance space, located at 11 East Superior Street in Downtown Duluth, Minnesota. Rules and other details are posted at:

Minnesota Monthly Reports on Forthcoming Film Production

January 3, 2008

Movie Madness II, a report in the January edition of Minnesota Monthly, outlines future Minnesota film projects. Read it at