Oklahoma City Launches New Prairie Surf Studios As State Boosts Production Incentives

Prairie Surf Studios has officially launched in downtown Oklahoma City in a converted convention center with five new soundstages and over 1.3 million square feet of production support space.

The soundstages range from 25,000 – 32,000 square feet in the old Cox Convention Center. The studio was created by Prairie Surf Media, founded by industry veterans and Oklahoma natives, actress Rachel Cannon (Fresh Off the Boat, Two and a Half Men, Mad Men) and screenwriter Matt Payne (Vegas, The Defenders, Memphis Beat).

The Oscar-winning and much decorated film Minari – about a South Korean family trying to make a life in the rural U.S. — filmed in the state (which was standing in for Arkansas).

The studio announcement follows Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt signing off on a new cash-back film rebate program with a rolling $30 million dollar cap and up to 38% for qualified expenditures. The “Filmed in Oklahoma Act of 2021″ was signed May 25 and takes effect July 1.

Martin Scorsese’s $200 million Apple projects Killers of the Flower Moon is currently shooting in Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Upcoming productions include Tom McCarthy’s film Stillwater starring Matt Damon, Reagan starring Dennis Quaid, and Season 1 of Taika Waititi’s Reservation Dogs for FX.

Cannon and Payne, who are co-executive directors, said that “launching Prairie Surf Media has been a labor of love.”

“We are eager to introduce filmmakers across the globe to our beautiful state,” they said, noting Oklahoma’s “famed Tallgrass Prairie, Little Sahara, Black Mesa, charming small towns, and growing downtown metropolises. Our rich environmental diversity with 13 unique ecosystems will serve as the perfect backdrop for countless stories in television, film, documentaries and commercials.”

Previous productions in the state include Rain Man, Twister, The Outsiders and August: Osage County.

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