Christoph Waltz and Willem Dafoe film in New Mexico

New Mexico often doubles for other US states and its terrain makes it an ideal setting for Western-genre productions

By Nia Daniels 25 Aug 2021

Christoph Waltz and Willem Dafoe film in New Mexico
Willem Dafoe via Karwai Tang and Getty Images

Director Walter Hill, best-known for his action films and the revival of the modern Western, has begun filming his latest feature, Dead for a Dollar, in New Mexico. The film stars Christoph Waltz, Willem Dafoe and Rachel Brosnahan. 

Shooting is currently taking place in Santa Fe. Written and directed by Hill, Dead for a Dollar is produced by Berry Meyerowitz, Neil Dunn, Carolyn McMaster, Kirk D’Amico and Jeremy Wall. Jeff Sackman, Larry Greenberg, Waltz, Lawrence Mortorff, and Alex Habrich executive produce.  

Dead for a Dollar follows a famed bounty hunter who runs into his sworn enemy, a professional gambler and outlaw that he had sent to prison years before, while on a mission to find and return the wife of a successful businessman who is being held hostage in Mexico. 

“It’s exciting to have western genre legend Walter Hill in New Mexico with an incredible cast and crew to shoot Dead for a Dollar,” said Amber Dodson, director, New Mexico Film Office

The production will employ approximately 80 New Mexico crew members, 20 New Mexico principal cast members, and 40 New Mexico background and extras. 

“Walter Hill is an important figure in American movie history and he returns to his most potent genre - the Western. We are thrilled to shoot in the #1 western location in the world – New Mexico,” said the producers. 

New Mexico is a popular international filming hub, with its profile having been further raised when Netflix opened its first US production hub in the state. It has several studio facilities, including Albuquerque Studios, and its terrain lends itself to doubling for western-style locales. 

Last autumn, the state hosted production on Idris Elba western The Harder They Fall, one of the first major productions to return to filming in New Mexico following the Covid shutdown. 

Christoph Waltz photo credit: George Kraychyk - © 2017 Paramount Pictures.
Willem Dafoe image via Karwai Tang and Getty Images.

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