- Associated Press - Sunday, November 1, 2015

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - It’s been a record-breaking year for New Mexico’s film industry, according to Gov. Susana Martinez.

Martinez announced Friday that the motion picture industry brought in nearly $290 million into the state economy last year, the largest amount in history.

“We take great pride in our film industry, and we’re pleased to see encouraging news like this,” Martinez said. “As we work to build an economy that’s as diverse as the place we call home, we’re continuing to see our strong incentive program help the film industry contribute to these efforts.”

The TV and movie industry infused the state’s economy with $288.6 million this year, according to data tabulated by the New Mexico Film Office. During fiscal year 2015, 25 major productions were in principal photography. In addition, project budget sizes rose 72 percent from fiscal year 2014. The number of television programs filmed in the state rose by 66 percent from fiscal year 2013.

“We’re pleased to see that our film industry partners continue to help grow and diversify our economy,” said Film Office Director Nick Maniatis. “We’re looking forward to continuing to support and work with them to showcase what New Mexico has to offer.”

Martinez signed a pair of bills boosting the already booming industry into law in April. One measure expands the incentive program to allow qualifying television pilot episodes to receive additional rebates. Another permits film companies to assign their tax rebates to banks on a one-time basis in order to get upfront loans.

Movies currently in production in New Mexico include “The Magnificent Seven” with Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt. The AMC network drama, “Better Call Saul,” is also in production. That series is a spin-off of “Breaking Bad,” which primarily filmed around Albuquerque for five seasons and brought more tourists to the city.

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