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Harry Thomason also co-produced Revenge of Bigfoot (1979) in Texarkana. It starred Rory Calhoun, Mike Hackworth, and T. Dan Hopkins.
Mike Hackworth
Texarkana, AR

I have worked in video/film production for over twenty-five years—native Arkansan. Excellent early history of films in Arkansas.

The state sales tax rebate offered to productions spending more than $500,000 in the state was called the “Nickel Rebate” and was the first state financial incentive for filmmakers. This 5% rebate ended a couple of years ago—currently (source: Motion Picture Association of America—MPAA) Arkansas is only one of two states that do not offer incentives to recruit this high-economic-impact industry. Legislation will be introduced in the 2009 session in an attempt to let Arkansas compete with sister states. In 1995, Louisiana hosted over twenty-nine productions, which provided $89 million in wages for full-time residents. The following year, Louisiana hosted forty-five productions.
There is growing interest and support from locals. The Little Rock Film Festival is one of five film festivals hosted in Arkansas. Little Rock has now been active in the national 48 Hour Film Project for three years. Three of our state universities now offer digital film degrees. The film production industry (source: MPAA, as of 2005) employs over 1.3 million with an annual payroll exceeding $30 billion. An additional $30 billion was paid directly for goods and services to support these productions in 2005. The size, growth, and economic impact of this technology-based industry need not be overlooked in Arkansas. Supporters of legislation for film incentives should write their state representatives and senators, as well as Governor Beebe, ASAP to support this needed legislation.

Sarah Tackett
Little Rock, AR