Louisiana’s tax incentives have suffered a recent blow, but New Orleans is so much more than a number. The venerable New Orleans Film Society remains a leader in the local industry, with its annual New Orleans Film Festival lighting up the fall. And the city’s extensive production infrastructure is still ripe for an indie moviemaker’s picking.
“Vendors are here to allow you access to resources on short notice that would normally be outside of the independent filmmaker’s reach,” says local moviemaker Paavo Hanninen, who’s in post-production on his short “Tourist” and in production on a feature-length documentary. “For ‘Tourist,’ we needed to purchase a few extra rolls of 16mm film before shooting began, and the Panavision office here is an on-call pickup location for Kodak, allowing us to order and pick up the film the same day.”
And when it comes to the “living” part of the equation, with its rich cultural history, the alligator jambalaya, the oversized daiquiris on Bourbon Street, and all that jazz, what’s not to love about the Big Easy?
Hanninen loves “the amazing culture of creativity and diversity that has been built up here for 300 years. People say this all the time, but there really is nowhere else like this in America, and nowhere else that leaves others with such a mixture of wonder and envy when you tell them you live here.”
Grab a beignet (but order your hurricane to go). As comedian Hannibal Buress once noted, you can even throw yourself a second line parade to celebrate once you’re officially a NOLA resident.