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  1. #1

    Default Hallmark plans to produce a TV drama in Colorado

    From The Denver Post:

    Hallmark Channel

    The scene opens on a Western frontier town, circa 1910, as a wealthy young woman from the East begins a new life as a teacher.
    The town could be played by Cripple Creek, Victor, Silverton or any number of Colorado towns in the upcoming “When Calls the Heart,” from the Hallmark Channel. Hallmark would like to shoot six episodes of a scripted drama series, $8 million worth of production, in Colorado beginning this spring. Officials expect to win approval of an incentive plan Thursday from the state Office of Economic Development & International Trade for Hallmark’s TV production, which would bring jobs and an economic boon to the state.
    “A series is like the Holy Grail,” said Donald Zuckerman, commissioner of the Office of Film, Television and Media. “If we get the right kind of shows here, not only do you employ people but it’s great for tourism.”
    Of course the frontier town could be played by Vancouver, too. Lately, the Canadian city where production is relatively inexpensive has been a stand-in for all manner of locations depicted in movies and TV. But Zuckerman is hopeful the OED will grant conditional approval for the project, to be helmed by producer Brad Krevoy (“Dumb & Dumber”), along with Brian Bird (“Touched by an Angel”) and directed by Michael Landon Jr.
    Pre-production would begin in May; shooting could begin by July and the series is slated to premiere in January 2014. The project is expected to require 100 crew members, 75 of them local, and 50 cast members, half of them local. (So far, Maggie Grace of “Lost” and Steven Amell of “Arrow” are attached to co-star.)
    Zuckerman also hopes to win approval for budget incentives for two reality TV shows from Discovery Channel, to be shot by local production companies this month. “Smoked,” a backyard barbecue competition series, is to be produced by Citizen Pictures; “Bakery Go Time,” a spinoff of TLC’s “Cake Boss,” is in the works from High Noon Entertainment.
    Discovery aims to relocate its post-production work from New York to Colorado. The total Colorado production budget for the two reality pilots would be $327,000. Colorado offers a 20 percent rebate whereas New York offers 30 percent.
    The cost of living is the obvious tradeoff. “It costs less to be here,” Zuckerman said.




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