Hollywood Alaska

The formerly "Everybody Loves Whales," - now called "Big Miracle," the first major, modern movie filmed entirely in Alaska is about to hit theaters. The tale of serial killer Robert Hansen, starring John Cusack and Nicolas Cage, filmed in Anchorage this fall. Other major-studio films are considering an Alaska shoot, even as an army of reality TV camera crews continues to prowl the state. Producers credit the state’s fledgling tax incentive program – one of the most generous such public subsidies in the country – with enticing movie-makers to the Last Frontier. How long will the gold rush last? Is the state getting a big enough return on its investment? Welcome to Hollywood, Alaska.

Why isn't 'Race to Save Nome' being filmed in Alaska? - 11/14/2012 10:37 am

'Frozen Ground' awarded $6.3 million, few new features in view - 8/29/2012 1:11 pm

Casting call: You, and the person you most want to punch in the face - 6/29/2012 11:10 am

Disney documentary-makers approved for Alaska feature - 6/28/2012 12:03 pm

Todd Palin joins military-themed reality show - 6/19/2012 9:51 am

PHOTOS: A first look at 'Frozen Ground' - 5/28/2012 6:59 pm

Barrow-based 'On the Ice' hits iTunes - 5/14/2012 4:42 pm

‘Twilight: Eclipse’ director tapped for Alaska-based thriller - 5/14/2012 10:42 am

Why isn't 'Race to Save Nome' being filmed in Alaska?

Movie with the word 'Nome' in the title will film in Canada: Actress Hilary Swank poses with the Oscar she won for best actress for her work in "Million Dollar Baby" in 2005. Swank will star in a movie about the 1925 serum run to Nome that will film early next year in Canada, Calgary newspapers report. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)Movie with the word 'Nome' in the title will film in Canada: Actress Hilary Swank poses with the Oscar she won for best actress for her work in "Million Dollar Baby" in 2005. Swank will star in a movie about the 1925 serum run to Nome that will film early next year in Canada, Calgary newspapers report. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

From Kyle Hopkins in Anchorage --

"Race to Save Nome," a big-budget mushing tale starring Kurt Russell and Hilary Swank, will begin filming this January in Alberta, the Calgary Herald reports.

This is at least the second large film to skip filming here despite an Alaska-based script within the past two years. The other was 2011's "The Grey." The move raises questions about the ability of the recently renewed state film subsidy program -- one of the most generous in the country -- to lure major movies to Alaska.

I've asked the state film office if the producers scouted Alaska and, if so, indicated why they chose to take the production somewhere else.

The film is a retelling of the 1925 serum run. About 150 carpenters will work to build a small town of 70 buildings west of Calgary for the filming, according to the Calgary Sun.

The movie does not appear to be the same project as a film called "The Cruelest Miles" -- also known as "Kings of the Trail" -- that Alaska movie-boosters hope to see produced in and around Anchorage.

What does the production of "Race to Save Nome" mean for that competing project? Is there room in theaters for two history-based mushing films?

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