Shot in Texas: Turn the Astrodome into a movie studio

What comes to mind when you think of Houston and Waco? If you're involved in the film business, the answers of late are the Astrodome and Branch Davidians, respectively.

First, the Astrodome. Elise Hendrix, a film makeup artist, and Cynthia Neely, president of Women in Film & Television Houston, want to turn the world's first domed stadium into a film studio. The Houston Astros left the Astrodome in 1999, and its most famous tenants since were Hurricane Katrina evacuees in 2005. A proposal to turn it into luxury hotel space appears stalled.

Ms. Hendrix believes a movie studio on the site would help solve some of the Texas film industry's losses to Louisiana, New Mexico and other states that offer heftier financial incentives. A Louisiana native raised in Houston, she worked films in Los Angeles for years before moving back to Space City. "I was hoping to find a steady market," she says, "but I got back here and it was a huge disappointment."

Making the dream a reality will require investors, who Ms. Hendrix says are out there, and approval by Harris County.

(Dallas Morning News)


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