A message for summer travelers: Michigan does not have any cannibals. The state really wants you to know that.

An interesting New York Times article yesterday mapped out the fight by filmmakers to produce their not-so-seemly visions in states otherwise hoping to continue to attract tourists. One of those filmmakers is Andrew van den Houten, whose horror flick The Woman was denied public money from Michigan because of its “subject matter, namely realistic cannibalism.” (Yet, the subject manner was tamer than van den Houten’s first movie filmed in Michigan, Offspring, a cannibal-centric film that involved…babies. He leaves it at that.)

Okay, well, I guess I understand the cold feet here, especially since Michigan would prefer to use its taxpayer dollars to fund projects that might potentially attract SUVs packed with shiny, spend-happy families. Not to say plenty of horror-loving travelers wouldn’t possibly be driven to make the trip to Michigan, just to see that one place where the cannibals ate that one guy. But what I want to know is: Who has actually been scared away from a city/state after seeing a film set in the location? Me, for one. When I saw the TV movie adaptation of Stephen King’s The Stand (pictured, top) as a kid, I vowed never to travel to Las Vegas. And to this day, I still haven’t. There are tigers there now, guys!

Other settings I’ve begun to fear, thanks to the movies: Hostel‘s Amsterdam (pictured, bottom), and, more generally, the woods. This I learned after watching back-to-back backwoodsman-are-evil movies on SyFy this weekend. What? You didn’t all do the same thing?