Cincinnati Once Again Ranks on MovieMaker Magazine's List of Best Places to Live and Work in the Film Industry

The magazine points to Ohio's refundable tax credit, as well as Cincinnati's Over-the-Rhine Film Festival and UC's film program as reasons for the rating.

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click to enlarge Movie production at Race Street and Garfield Place Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2023. - Photo: Madeline Fening
Photo: Madeline Fening
Movie production at Race Street and Garfield Place Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2023.

Cincinnati is continuing its transformation into a Midwest Hollywood as it once again snagged a spot on MovieMaker Magazine’s “Best Places to Live and Work as a Moviemaker” list. The Queen City remains in the No. 11 spot where it landed in 2022.

“It is a tremendous honor for Cincinnati to maintain its prestigious ranking on the list of top North American cities for filmmaking from MovieMaker Magazine,” Kristen Schlotman, executive director of Film Cincinnati, said in a press release. “We have seen extraordinary growth and interest in our Cincy region as a great place to work in film and will continue to build on this momentum.”

MovieMaker ranks cities based on surveys, production spending, tax incentives, additional research and, when possible, personal visits. The magazine notes that Cincinnati raked in around $200 million in industry spending in 2022 thanks to Ohio’s 30% refundable tax credit on eligible expenses and that more film professionals are moving to the area to be hired as locals.

“What they find is a diverse, friendly city that’s as American as it gets, with a lower-than-average cost of living,” MovieMaker explains in its rankings.

The magazine also points to the Over-the-Rhine Film Festival, which they rated as one of the coolest film festivals in the world, and the University of Cincinnati’s film program.

“A little bit Midwestern, a little bit Southern, Cincinnati is close enough to Northern Kentucky to share an airport. So filmmakers can choose from a diverse range of locations across two states, and more local flavor than the city’s celebrated chili. (To put out the fire we recommend Graeter’s ice cream, just maybe the best we’ve ever had),” the magazine says.

Cincinnati is also becoming home to bigger productions. Recently, Tom Hardy, Austin Butler, Michael Shannon and Jodie Comer were in town to film Jeff Nichols’ The Bikeriders, a movie about "a ’60s Midwestern motorcycle club as it evolves over the course of a decade from a community for outsiders into a far more sinister gang," according to Variety.

Warner Brothers Studio also tapped Cincinnati to shoot its new Robert De Niro film, Wise Guys, a film following a feud between two gangsters, both played by De Niro. Local spots, such as Arnold’s Bar and Grill, Eden Park and Krohn Conservatory, have also been temporarily closing for filming, and while none can confirm what movie is being shot in these locations, there has been speculation it’s for Wise Guys.

Cincinnati was the top-ranked Ohio city on MovieMaker's list; Cleveland ranked No. 18. Atlanta took home the top spot.


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