November 11, 2008
“Taking Woodstock,” the Ang Lee motion picture that was filmed in New
Lebanon, New York for three months this late summer and early fall,
is gone, leaving behind good vibes and more tangible benefits.
The film dropped about $8 million into the soft local economy, some of
which found its way into the Berkshires via hotel stays, purchases
from a variety of stores, and the restaurant trade. An effort to
provide additional tax incentives to encourage film companies to do
business in Massachusetts stalled on Beacon Hill earlier this year,
and while it is can be difficult to make a case for incentives at a
time when revenue is declining, tax breaks for filmmaking will make
back that money and more through the stimulus provided for
businesses, as was the case with “Taking Woodstock.”
When the movie is released next year, it will also give welcome publicity to our
neighbor to the west. Government incentives to bring film companies
to the state is money well spent.