Following a press release from the New Mexico Film Office from earlier today that stated an upcoming Sony Studios production called Greenbrier will begin filming in Albuquerque this month—the Albuquerque Journal reports that it is, in fact, the big-screen version of the beloved AMC television series Breaking Bad. Cue fanfare.
The release sparsely states that the film "tracks the escape of a kidnapped man and his quest for freedom," and Journal arts and entertainment editor Adrian Gomez was unable to identify which if any original Breaking Bad cast members are slated to appear. He did not identify his source by name, though the film office suggests Greenbrier will employ roughly 300 crew, 450 extras and 16 actors from New Mexico.
If true, the production would represent the first project in a three-year deal inked between Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan and Sony Studios. Gilligan also created Better Call Saul, the spinoff series about unscrupulous lawyer Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk) from the Breaking Bad universe. We'd get into the plot points of Gilligan's shows here, but we're pretty sure if you don't already know, it's kind of on you.
"We only know what the New Mexico Film Office has said," Santa Fe Film Office Executive Director Eric Witt tells SFR. "A project called Greenbrier will film primarily in Albuquerque with some filming potentially in Santa Fe."
If confirmed as being a part of Breaking Bad, the New Mexico film office can add another feather to its cap along with the acquisition of Albuquerque Studios by streaming/production giant Netflix in October. Both represent a changing tide in New Mexico's film incentive tax program, the particulars of which are poised to change depending on the outcome of today's gubernatorial race.
Currently, the incentive caps out at $50 million in annual payouts, with gubernatorial candidate Steve Pearce previously stating he's in favor of raising it and Michelle Lujan Grisham in favor of raising or eliminating the cap altogether. Set by outgoing Gov. Susana Martinez, critics have pointed to the comparably low cap as a reason for dwindling projects since 2011, though it would appear good things are in the works, especially if we're to get reacquainted with Walter White and Jesse Pinkman.