Why Texas Should Worry a Little Less About How the State is Represented on Screen

Texas offers incentives, but may take them away if they don’t like how the film portrays the state.

By Laura RiceApril 13, 2016 12:01 pm| ,

A new television show is putting Texas in the spotlight once again, but not everyone is pleased with how the state is being represented.

Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of Dallas” is not exactly masterpiece theatre, but with its premiere this week, it certainly is something Texans are talking about.

This got us thinking about how the state is represented on screens small and large. Dominic Cancilla, an Austin-based producer, has been involved with several big budget films, including one that became especially notorious in Texas – a movie call Machete that lost some state incentive money because officials didn’t like how the film represented Texas. Cancilla says that the agreement is hard for artists to navigate.

“It’s a very tricky wicket, the content clause that is in the incentive,” Cancilla says. “It’s first and foremost a little bit offensive to basically tell the artist what they can or cannot do, but from my understanding, that was a crucial part of the legislation and the state government wasn’t going to let it pass without that addendum.”

What you’ll hear in this interview:

– Why Cancilla had to move production of another movie to Georgia
– What Texas can do better to attract film business
– Why it’s worth it to attract filmmakers to the state