Utah gives tax break for film about Aron Ralston
January 18, 2010
SALT LAKE CITY – A state panel has approved a tax-credit incentive of up to $2.8 million for the filming of a movie in Utah about the mountaineer renowned for amputating his own arm after it was pinned by a half-ton boulder in a remote canyon near Moab.
The board of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development this week approved the tax incentive for “127 Hours,” to be filmed by Danny Boyle, the award-winning director of “Slumdog Millionaire.”
Boyle said production will take place in Utah over 42 days in March and April. He said some of the filming is set for Bluejohn Canyon, where Aron Ralston’s ordeal took place.
Ralston cut off his right arm with a dull blade in 2003 after he’d been pinned for several days at the bottom of the canyon. He later wrote a book about the experience, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place,” which inspired the movie. The Coloradan also gives motivational speeches.
Boyle said he hopes Ralston will show up for much of the filming but acknowledged it might be too intense for him. He said the film will be both “exhilarating” and “grueling,” but ultimately it celebrates “the life force that pulls (Ralston) back to his friends and family.”
Rapid Films Inc. will receive a tax-credit incentive of up to 20 percent of the total dollars left in the state, expected to be just under $14 million.
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“The story is a slam-dunk for Utah,” said Boyle, adding that Utah residents will make up most of the movie’s crew. He also said the film would help lure tourists by showcasing Utah’s natural beauty.