Arkansas' Chaffee Crossing goes Hollywood
The Fort Chaffee Board of Directors approved the sale of nearly 20 acres of land to TGE Global Entertainment to build a $30 million film and television studio.
- The project is to be named TGE Spark Studios.
Why it matters: The studio could bring more film projects to Arkansas and generate an estimated $32 million in annual economic impact for the Fort Smith area.
Flashback: Arkansas has served as a backdrop to about 75 films, from "Uncle Tom's Cabin" in 1927 to HBO's "True Detective" (season 3) in 2019.
- There are two soundstages in Arkansas: Rockhill Studios in Fayetteville and Farm Studios (aka Bentonville Studios) in Hiwasse.
By the numbers: The agreement includes 15 acres at $40,000 each and $299,000 for four buildings on 3.5 acres, for a total of $899,000.
- TGE plans to build a 92,000 square foot facility with about half of that being film and television space.
The state offers competitive rebates or tax credits of 20% on goods and services and 30% on Arkansas-based labor.
What they're saying: "It would be a wonderful addition for Arkansas, especially for that region," Arkansas' film commissioner, Christopher Crane, told Axios.
- He declined to speculate on what it could mean for the film industry in Arkansas but said that infrastructure like the proposed studio is always a good selling point.
What we're watching: The deal hasn't yet closed on the land, and there's no timeline on when construction will start.
Of note: Principal photography on the feature film "5,000 Blankets" is expected to wrap up in Fayetteville on Wednesday.
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