The yet to be filmed movie “Draft Day”, featuring Academy Award winning actor and director Kevin Costner as the Buffalo Bills General Manager, will now be filmed in Cleveland and Costner’s character will now be GM of the Browns. Lionsgate Productions chose Cleveland over Buffalo in part due to the higher tax incentives offered, but also because of the availibility of qualified crew.
Buffalo Bills President Russ Brandon did a great job of showing “Draft Day” Director Ivan Reitman Ralph Wilson Stadium a month ago and Reitman was high on filming as much of the film as possible at the Bills home. In the end though it wasn’t Reitman’scall and to add insult to injury the film will no longer use the Bills as the featured team.
The cost of filming major films in Buffalo is relatively high due to the cost of bringing in qualified union crew members from downstate. Plus, the tax incentives offered by Canada and Ohio make those locations desirable over New York state.
New York State Senator Patrick Gallivan, who has introduced a Bill in the Senate asking for additional tax breaks in WNY offered this quote: “The news today that Cleveland was selected over western New York as the filming location for “Draft Day” – a film about the Buffalo Bills and set in and around western New York – is just the latest example of why New York State needs to expand and reform its film production tax credit program to make Upstate and western New York more attractive to the entertainment industry. We have desirable locations throughout the area, we have near universal support from within the community, but we are lacking an incentive program that can compete with neighboring states. Western New York didn’t lose a movie today, we lost jobs; a failure to act after this latest development would be inexcusable.”
Filed under: Local Headlines