Closeup: Emilio Estevez

Emilio Estevez sees opportunity for everyone in Cincinnati in this article from The Daily.

Cincinnati closeup
City becomes a fave of filmmakers after Ohio enacts tax credits
By Molly Oswaks
Date: Friday, December 14, 2012

Call it Tinseltown of the Midwest.

Thanks to the Ohio House and Senate approving a whopping $40 million in tax credits earlier this year for film production companies willing to shoot in Ohio, the Buckeye State is seeing stars, namely Emilio Estevez, who’s been scouting locations in Cincinnati for an upcoming movie.

“Since I’ve been back in Los Angeles, I can’t stop thinking about getting back to Cincy,” Estevez told The Daily.

This spring, he’ll get his chance, when he spends five weeks there directing and starring in a production called “Johnny Longshot.”

The son of actor Martin Sheen, a native of Dayton, Ohio, Estevez has spent time in the state before, but never in Cincinnati, where the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood is experiencing an impressive cultural renaissance, with the $100 million refurbishment of the Music Hall and Washington Park’s $50 million redesign.

“Even the gentrification doesn’t feel obscene,” he said.

Estevez was no doubt drawn by how amenable Ohio has become for filmmakers.

“Ohio was one of the last states to adopt production incentives,” said Kristen Erwin, executive director of the Greater Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky Film Commission, adding that cash rebates for film crews are unique to the state.

Ohio offers 25 percent cash back on all production money spent in the state, and 35 percent back on wages spent to employ Ohioans, she said.

But Estevez said it isn’t just the handsome cash incentives that have film crews so excited to shoot in Cincinnati.

“It’s the vibe there,” Estevez said. “There’s a ton of civic pride — you don’t get that in L.A. People there are jaded, they’re over it. Los Angeles is a town that’s based on fear, it’s run by fearful people, opportunity for the few … There’s opportunities for everyone in Cincy. There’s room for everyone.”