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'Fathers and Daughters' filming could bring Crowe back to Pittsburgh area

| Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014, 12:04 a.m.
This image released by Paramount Pictures shows Jennifer Connelly and Russell Crowe in a scene from 'Noah.'

Crews have been scouting the Pittsburgh area for weeks in anticipation of a film project that could bring Russell Crowe back to the Steel City.

The Academy Award-winning actor is slated to appear in “Fathers and Daughters,” a project of Los Angeles-based Voltage Productions. Producers have applied for but not received a Pennsylvania Film Tax Credit, said Dawn Keezer, executive director of the Pittsburgh Film Office.

“We're really hopeful they come to Pittsburgh,” Keezer said. “But they're not coming without the tax credit.”

Voltage President Nicolas Chartier did not return a call seeking comment.

Pennsylvania set aside $60 million in the budget for state film tax credits.

If filmmakers spend at least 60 percent of their total production budget in Pennsylvania, they can apply 25 percent of production expenses spent here to offset state taxes. Starting in 2013, the state made a 30 percent rebate available for projects, which use “qualifying production facilities,” including 31st Street Studios in the Strip District and Island Studios in McKees Rocks.

Pennsylvania has paid more than $300 million in tax credits for film and television projects that injected $1.4 billion into its economy, according to state figures.

Others set to appear in the “Fathers and Daughters” movie include actors Aaron Paul and Amanda Seyfried, according to the website Internet Movie Database.

The script is described as: “A woman struggling with relationship issues reflects on growing up with her famous novelist father.”

Gabriele Muccino is slated to direct. His other projects have included “Playing for Keeps” in 2012 and “The Pursuit of Happyness” in 2006.

Crowe is listed as one of six executive producers as well as a cast member.

He spent time in Pittsburgh while filming “The Next Three Days,” released in 2010.

That film featured Pittsburgh and Crowe as a college professor who broke his wife out of the Allegheny County Jail. Filming took place in Regent Square, Oakland, Uptown and elsewhere.

“Fathers and Daughters” is set in New York.

Jason Cato is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7936 or jcato@tribweb.com.

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