‘American Horror’ in St. Rose
New studio has attracted blockbusters, TV series
The highly-rated series airs on FX and is entering its fourth season, the last two of which have been shot in the New Orleans area. The show is unique in that although it often reuses the same actors, each season is different and the actors play different roles. Another distinction about the series is that producers have been able to pull in well-known film stars such as Jessica Lange and Kathy Bates for recurring roles.
Neil Patrick Harris, who starred in long-running CBS sitcom “How I Met Your Mother,” will also guest star this season on “American Horror Story.”
This year, the show will focus on traveling freak shows in their last days in the 1950s. The new season is set to air this fall.
Quixote Studios CEO Mikel Elliott said being able to attract thriving projects, even for short periods of time, has been a great boost to the St. Rose studio and that exciting things are happening at the 30,000-square-foot soundstage.
In addition to hosting “American Horror Story” the soundstage has been used for blockbuster films including “Jurassic World” and “Terminator: Genesis.” The studio has also hosted smaller movies such as “Don’t Mess with Texas,” starring Reese Witherspoon and Sofía Vergara that also shot in the Bayou Gauche area in May.
Despite the lack of a long-term tenant in the space, Elliott said the soundstage is thriving and they are already looking at expanding the studio.
“We’re excited about it. Things are moving forward. We are looking at expanding the facility, but we are not quite there yet,” he said.
Haryl Deason, the general manager of Quixote Studios’ St. Rose location, said he feels a new campus in St. Charles Parish would be a boon to film productions in the area.
“I am happy with the fact we are building infrastructure in Louisiana and we are able to provide the service, not just for the film industry but for the state. The more that people from Hollywood come here and can get the exact same service they can get in Hollywood, along with the tax credits, that is the plus,” he said. “The producers want the tax credits, the crews want the ability to do their job correctly.”
A large part of Quixote’s business relies not just on those filming at the location, but also through selling materials and renting equipment necessary to the filmmaking process.
Jason Van Haverbeke is working in the special effects department on “Terminator: Genesis,” which is being shot in different locations throughout the New Orleans metro area. He said he comes out to Quixote Studios at least twice a month to rent and buy items that would otherwise have to be shipped in.
“To take a five minute drive on Airline is a lot easier than getting products shipped from L.A., New York or Atlanta. It is a lifesaver having these guys here,” Van Haverbeke said. “They’ve done everything to take care of us.”
If Quixote Studios gets their way, that accessibility and ease will improve if they can attract other businesses to the area that would service production companies.
Deason said Quixote Studios would eventually like the St. Rose area to develop into a one-stop shop for producers.
“Our goal is to move forward on this next project and build a bigger campus so we can bring in other vendors to service the film industry and get everything on the same level,” he said. “We can bring in a camera house, a dolly company...services that provide for the film industry.
“That is how we want to grow inside the parish. We want to attract those other businesses to join us to help support and bring more business to the parish.”
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