By MORGAN LEE
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico’s governor says direct spending by production companies on films, TV series and other media has never been higher in the state, topping $855 million in fiscal year 2022. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham released the numbers Thursday. New Mexico’s unique landscapes have attracted projects including the Netflix series “Stranger Things” since the success of AMC’s long-running series “Breaking Bad” and a generous increase of incentives passed by state lawmakers in 2019. The new production spending numbers had been trending upward before the pandemic resulted in a precipitous drop in 2020. They rebounded as work picked up again in 2021. Some lawmakers have criticized the film subsidies over the years.