ROSARITO BEACH, BAJA CALIFORNIA, MEXICO---President Felipe Calderon on Tuesday pledged incentives to attract more international film makers and productions to Rosarito and the rest of Mexico.
Speaking to an audience of about 400 people, Calderon pledged an initial $20 million to strengthen the country’s film industry plus incentives to attract productions here from around the world.
Calderon made his remarks at Baja Studios in Rosarito, which was built for the production of the James Cameron’s Titanic and where portions of other blockbusters including Master & Commander and Pearl Harbor have been filmed.
The president was received for his visit by Rosarito Mayor Hugo Torres. Other dignitaries attending included Baja Gov. Jose Guadalupe Osuna Millan as well as many other government officials. Noted actor Edward James Olmos also was a featured guest.
“Rosarito has become a place of great importance for the film industry, and it is precisely why here we announce this program for the promotion of film production," Calderon said.
He stressed that the film industry has great importance in the global culture, as well being as being an excellent source for jobs, income and regional promotion.
“Rosarito has shown that it is possible to offer world-class services to the film industry,” Calderon said. “Productions here have brought international fame to the city.”
For his part, Mayor Torres reiterated the importance of promoting the film industry.
"We welcome the support of the President of the Republic, and we are convinced that this decree will make Rosarito even more attractive to other countries that are interested in filming here, “ Torres said.
Torres noted that film production can be a key to the area’s economic recovery as well as a boost for tourism.
Dignitaries also toured the Baja Studios production facility in the Popotla area of Rosarito.. It was built in the late ‘90s during Torres first term as mayor, specifically for the filming of Titanic.
It has huge salt-water tanks as well as an ocean front setting. Baja Studios also contains a Titanic Museum and has been used as a theme park as well as for its production facilities.