Billy Ray Cyrus and his daughter, Miley, want to shoot their upcoming Hannah Montana movie in their home state of Tennessee, but it may not happen for them, according to the Associated Press.
The film will be based on their very successful and popular Disney Channel series of the same name, in which 15-year-old Miley Cyrus plays Miley Stewart who moves from Tennessee to Malibu, California. She’s a normal high school student by day, but a secret pop star by night, who’s known as Hannah Montana.
In the proposed feature-length film, also produced by the Disney Co. and set to start shooting in April, the Stewarts return home to Tennessee, and the Cyrus family feels it’s only right for it to be shot there as well.
Billy Ray, who plays the dad on the show, tells AP, “The thing of it is, Walt Disney really wants to film this movie in Tennessee.”
The problem is that state officials may not be able to offer the producers enough financial incentives. Perry Gibson, executive director of the Tennessee Film, Entertainment and Music Commission, said, “It would mean a real impact on tourism and it would be a family friendly film that would come to the state.”
Most states benefit from hosting motion pictures shoots, and the competing Louisiana is aggressively pursuing many productions. After they make their offer to Disney, the Tennessee Agency will see if their incentives can match it. As of now, their program features rebates and sales-tax breaks to filmmakers based on a percentage of their in-state spending.
The Cyrus family celebrated Thanksgiving at their home in Tennessee, during a break in the sold-out Hannah Montana tour, and Billy Ray was hopeful about returning for the April shoot. Of his home state’s chances on acquiring the production, he said, “Quite frankly, I think they are pretty close.”