12:30pm PT by Bryn Elise Sandberg
Netflix Plans New Mexico Production Hub
Netflix is headed to New Mexico. The streaming giant has landed on Albuquerque as the location for its new U.S. production hub for its growing roster of television shows and films.
As part of the plans, the streaming giant is in final negotiations to purchase ABQ Studios, located in Albuquerque’s Mesa Del Sol. The deal marks the Netflix’s first purchase of a production studio complex. The company aims to bring $1 billion in production to New Mexico over the next 10 years and create up to 1,000 production jobs a year.
Netflix will produce movies and series in the new facility and at other locations around the state. Among those in the works are the irreverent apocalypse dramedy Daybreak, the supernatural drama Chambers and the epic drama Messiah. Chambers and Messiah are currently being produced in the Albuquerque area, and both productions have already provided jobs for over 700 New Mexican crewmembers. Previous Netflix productions in New Mexico include the limited series Godless, Adam Sandler’s The Ridiculous Six and the former A&E series Longmire.
Helping make it possible for Netflix to come to Albuquerque is the state’s Local Economic Development Act (LEDA) funding. New Mexico will provide up to $10 million in LEDA funding, while the City of Albuquerque will commit up to $4.5 million in local LEDA funding to the project. The City of Albuquerque will be responsible for dispersing the LEDA funds as appropriate.
“Netflix is at the cutting edge of the film and television industry and it’s an honor to welcome them to New Mexico,” said New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez. “After years of hard work to cut taxes and make New Mexico business-friendly, we’re seeing incredible results. Now, New Mexico is leading the nation in economic growth and lowering unemployment and we’ve brought the world’s leading internet entertainment service, Netflix, to our state.”
“Landing Netflix is a transformative victory that will change the business landscape in the Duke City,” said Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller. “The city has leveraged the groundwork laid over the years by our partners in the film and TV industry and we’ve made sure that film and the creative economy remained a tenet of our economic development plan so we can create accessible, high-paying jobs in this industry. Now viewers all over the world will be able to experience the most beautiful and livable city in the Southwest while watching their favorite Netflix content.”
The move doesn't mean that Netflix is abandoning Los Angeles, however. In fact, just days earlier, the streamer signed a lease to take over an entire 13-story building in Hollywood starting in 2020. The development — owned by Hudson Pacific Properties — will serve as the new office space for the rapidly growing company. And production for Netflix's shows and films will continue to take place in various locations, depending on specific project needs.
“Our experience producing shows and films in New Mexico inspired us to jump at the chance to establish a new production hub here,” said Netflix vp physical production Ty Warren. “The people, the landscape and the facilities are all stellar and we can’t wait to get to work — and employ lots of New Mexicans — creating entertainment for the world to enjoy. We are grateful to Governor Martinez, Mayor Keller and the people of New Mexico for the opportunity to create a new ‘home away from home’ here in Albuquerque.”
“Netflix is one of the world’s most exciting brands, changing the way people think about and consume media, and challenging companies in every industry to innovate. We are thrilled to welcome this world-class company to Albuquerque,” added Roberta Cooper Ramo, chair of Albuquerque Economic Development. “In addition to the economic impact this project will create for local businesses and New Mexico residents, Netflix’s decision further communicates that Albuquerque has assets that set it apart from every other city.”