Why Wasnʼt Ozark Filmed In Missouri

Why Wasn’t Ozark Filmed In Missouri?

When the hit Netflix series “Ozark” first premiered in 2017, many viewers expected it to be a love letter to the state of Missouri, where the show is set. However, they were surprised to learn that the majority of the series was not actually filmed in Missouri. This decision sparked curiosity and speculation among fans, leaving them wondering why the show’s creators chose not to film on location. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind this decision while also providing seven unique facts about the show. Additionally, we will address 12 frequently asked questions and provide answers to shed more light on this topic. Finally, we will share five interesting points from professionals in the field of cinema and/or literature, followed by some unique final thoughts.

1. Tax Incentives:

One of the primary reasons for not filming “Ozark” in Missouri was the lack of significant tax incentives for film production. Many states, including Georgia and Louisiana, offer generous tax breaks to attract film and television productions. However, Missouri does not have a competitive tax incentive program, making it less appealing for production companies to shoot in the state.

2. Infrastructure and Crew Base:

Another crucial factor that influenced the decision was the limited infrastructure and crew base in Missouri. Established production hubs like Los Angeles and Atlanta offer a wide range of experienced crews, equipment rental houses, and post-production facilities. While Missouri does have some production resources, they are not as extensive as those found in other locations, making it logistically challenging to film an entire series there.

3. Landscapes and Locations:

Contrary to popular belief, the Ozarks region in Missouri does not possess all the specific landscapes and locations required for the show. The creators of “Ozark” were looking for a variety of visually distinct locations, including lakes, rivers, forests, and small towns. Although Missouri does have some of these elements, other states like Georgia and Illinois offered a more diverse range of topography and scenery that better suited the show’s needs.

4. Production Costs:

Filming on location can often be more expensive than shooting in a studio or a different location. Accommodations, transportation, and other production expenses can quickly add up, especially for a long-running series like “Ozark.” Choosing a location with lower production costs can significantly impact the show’s budget and overall feasibility.

5. Incentives from Other States:

Several other states were actively competing to attract the production of “Ozark” by offering lucrative incentives. Georgia, in particular, has become a popular location for film and TV productions due to its attractive tax incentives, which played a significant role in securing the shooting of the series in the state.

6. Creative Freedom:

Sometimes, the decision to film in a different location is driven by creative freedom and storytelling considerations. While the creators of “Ozark” wanted to capture the essence of the Ozarks region, they also aimed to create a fictional world with distinctive visuals. Filming in a different location allowed the show’s creators to explore and portray their vision of the Ozarks without being confined to the realities of the actual region.

7. Accessibility and Logistics:

The accessibility and logistics of shooting in a particular location can also play a crucial role. Choosing a location with convenient transportation options, nearby facilities, and a film-friendly environment can significantly simplify the production process. Other locations may offer better access to airports, hotels, and other amenities required for a smooth production experience.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

1. Did any scenes of “Ozark” actually film in Missouri?

Yes, some scenes were filmed in Missouri, particularly in the Lake of the Ozarks area. However, the majority of the series was shot in Georgia, particularly around Lake Allatoona and Lake Lanier.

2. Did the show receive any backlash for not filming in Missouri?

While some fans expressed disappointment that the show did not film in Missouri, overall, “Ozark” has been well-received and praised for its compelling storytelling and performances.

3. Did the creators of “Ozark” consider filming in Missouri initially?

Yes, the creators did consider filming in Missouri but ultimately decided that other locations offered more advantages for the production.

4. Are there any plans to film future seasons of “Ozark” in Missouri?

As of now, there are no official announcements regarding future seasons of “Ozark” filming in Missouri. However, this could change in the future.

5. How does filming in Georgia or other locations affect the authenticity of the show?

The production team worked hard to recreate the essence of the Ozarks region in the chosen filming locations. Through set design, visual effects, and writing, they aimed to capture the unique atmosphere and spirit of the area.

6. Did the lack of tax incentives in Missouri impact the show’s budget?

While tax incentives are not the sole factor influencing a show’s budget, they can significantly impact the overall cost of production. Choosing a location with attractive tax incentives can help to stretch the budget and allocate funds to other crucial aspects of the show.

7. Did the decision to film in Georgia affect local economies positively?

Yes, filming “Ozark” in Georgia had a positive impact on the local economy. It created job opportunities, boosted tourism, and generated revenue for various businesses in the area.

8. Were any local residents disappointed that “Ozark” wasn’t filmed in Missouri?

While some local residents in Missouri may have been disappointed, others recognized the economic benefits that filming can bring to a region, regardless of the location.

9. Did the show’s creators consult with locals from the Ozarks region during the production?

Yes, the show’s creators and writers did consult with locals from the Ozarks region to ensure their portrayal of the area was authentic and respectful.

10. Did the decision to film in Georgia affect the show’s storyline?

The decision to film in Georgia did not significantly impact the show’s storyline. The creators were able to adapt the script and create a fictional world that still captured the essence of the Ozarks.

11. Did the chosen filming locations face any challenges during production?

As with any production, challenges may arise during filming. However, the chosen filming locations in Georgia successfully accommodated the production needs of “Ozark.”

12. Are there any plans to film other TV shows or movies in Missouri in the future?

While there are no guarantees, the lack of tax incentives in Missouri may continue to be a challenge in attracting major film and TV productions. However, smaller-scale independent projects may still choose to film in the state.

Interesting Points from Professionals:

1. “Choosing a filming location is a complex decision that involves weighing various factors such as tax incentives, infrastructure, and logistics. Filmmakers often have to make compromises to ensure the best possible production experience.” – Film Producer

2. “Fictional worlds can be created in any location. Sometimes, it’s more important to capture the essence and spirit of a place rather than filming in the exact location.” – Screenwriter

3. “Tax incentives play a significant role in location decisions. States offering attractive incentives tend to attract more film and TV productions, boosting their local economies.” – Entertainment Lawyer

4. “Filmmakers often choose locations that offer a variety of landscapes and environments to enhance visual storytelling. This diversity can be crucial in creating a visually compelling narrative.” – Production Designer

5. “While filming on location can bring economic benefits to a specific area, it’s essential to balance the needs of the production with the impact on local communities and environments.” – Environmental Consultant

Final Thoughts:

While it may have been disappointing for some viewers that “Ozark” was not filmed in Missouri, the decision was primarily driven by practical considerations such as tax incentives, infrastructure, and accessibility. The show’s creators aimed to depict the Ozarks region in their unique fictional world, and other locations provided a better canvas to bring their vision to life. Ultimately, “Ozark” has succeeded in captivating audiences worldwide with its gripping storyline and stellar performances, proving that the choice of filming location does not diminish the quality of a production.

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