Coming to a college campus near you: a Hollywood movie? - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Coming to a college campus near you: a Hollywood movie?

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by Bryan Goettel

IOWA CITY (KWWL) - From Tinseltown to a Midwest college town. Hollywood is taking a hard look at using the University of Iowa to film a movie this summer.

"We had a film crew that came on campus last Wednesday and Thursday," UI spokesperson Steve Parrott said.

The draw -- an incentive program started two years ago that offers a fifty percent income tax credit. But don't be looking for the next Hollywood blockbuster. The project under consideration is expected to operate within a budget of about a million dollars.

"Every project that shoots here and has good success is one of those where the word goes back to Los Angeles and helps to show time and time again that we're a good place to come and shoot," Iowa Film Office Manager Tom Wheeler said.

While nothing is set in stone, the school is hopeful an arrangement can be worked out by next week.

"Several students have asked questions about it and are excited that there's a film crew coming to town," UI Department of Cinema Chair Russell Valentino said.

Filming could begin by mid-June and last up to four weeks. So instead of looking for that internship in L.A., some of Iowa's film studies majors could get the rare chance to learn in their own backyard.

"This is a much more convenient arrangement when the film comes to you rather than you have to go to it," Valentino said.

"It looks like an opportunity to do a little economic development for the state of Iowa and also provide some opportunity for our students to maybe be extras in a film or even work behind the scenes," Parrott said.

Parrott says he's open to the idea of more movies being filmed on campus. On one condition: it doesn't come at the expense of the highest quality education possible for Iowa students. So don't expect the Old Capitol to be mistaken for the Hollywood sign anytime soon.

Online Reporter: Bryan Goettel

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