movies

The Coen brothers' latest gambit

In the land of hard-boiled loners doing whats right against all odds, Joel and Ethan Coen are kings. They roam from North Dakotan small towns to Los Angeles bowling alleys to the streets of Washington, D.C. trailing ironic dialogue and darkly lit scenes.

This month they regroup amongst the modern-day cowboys in the rolling landscapes of New Mexico to shoot their latest film.

Gambit tells the story of an art curator, Colin Firth, who hatches a con to sell a fake Monet painting to a wealthy collector, Alan Rickman. Cameron Diaz plays a Texan rodeo queen masquerading as a woman whose grandfather liberated the painting after World War II.

The film is a remake of the 1966 crime comedy starring Sir Michael Caine and Shirley MacLaine.

Production started in May in London and moves to New Mexico in July. Scenes will take place in and around Carrizozo, Galisteo, Laguna Pueblo, Los Lunas, Rio Rancho and Socorro. The cast and crew includes at least 130 New Mexicans as well as more than 400 actors and extras.

The Coen brothers have filmed here before, with True Grit and No Country for Old Men. New Mexico's Film Crew Advancement Program provides incentives for filmmakers to hire New Mexican film and television professionals. FCAP reimburses the company 50 percent of a participants wages up and offers a 25 percent film production tax rebate.