“Film Incentive$”, The Filmmaker’s Best Friend’$

TAX INCENTIVES

Tax incentives sometimes also known as “Movie Production Incentives” are tax benefits offered by one or several states or countries in order to attract production companies to their territories and have them shoot any type of Film or TV related content. Filmmakers usually try to take as much advantage of these benefits in order to not just achieve their vision, but most importantly to reduce in the cost of their projects in a big dimension. Tax incentives have been existing for quite a while, although the alarming runaway of productions from the United States has increased the number of measures taken by the government in order to secure more local productions and also to promote the creation of new jobs and other types of opportunities. In 2009 the number of states that were offering tax incentives for entertainment productions raised to 44. The following cities and states are some of the most influential places on this topic in the modern day industry.

NEW YORK

New York is one of the most appealing cities in the world for many reasons. People fly out to New York from all over the world for its many attractions. One of the reasons film makers may want to consider visiting New York, aside from the amazing food, great attractions and amazing locations to shoot, huge talent pools, one of-a-kind landmarks and great culture, are the film incentives.

New York Loves Film offers the following “at-a-glance” summary of the state’s incentives:

Production:

-$420 million/year New York State film incentive program extended through 2019

-30% fully refundable credit on most below the line expenses

-Increases credit to 40% on qualified labor for certain Upstate counties beginning in 2015

-Eliminates 75% qualifying threshold on all eligible New York State post production costs

-Relocated talk and variety television shows now eligible (with certain qualifications)

Post Production:

30% fully refundable credit on all post for films that don’t shoot in New York State

That credit increases to 35% if post is done outside the metro region

-That credit increases AGAIN to 45% on labor for certain Upstate counties beginning in 2015

VFX and Animation qualifying threshold now lowered to 20% of total VFX or Animation budget OR a minimum spend of $3 million (whichever is lower)

-Maintains qualifying threshold for rest of post at 75%

-Increases funding from $7 million to $25 million per year beginning in 2015

Click here for a full description of the New York incentive program.

How could you pass up these great incentives? Here are some studios taking advantage of this. Disney and Marvel execs committed to film some 60 episodes of Marvel’s four Netflix series and a mini series in New York. The Tonight Show is no longer in Los Angeles, it is now in New York.

Some other shows being made in New York:

  1. Forever
  2. Richard Lagravenese
  3. Madam Secretary
  4. Wall Street
  5. Tin Man
  6. Gotham
  7. How I Met Your Dad
  8. Irreversible
  9. Dead Boss
  10. State of Affairs

LOUISIANA

Shooting films in Louisinana has not been common in the film world, up until 2002 when the state released a unique tax incentive package. Since it’s creation, crew productons greatly increased more than 400% through the years. In order to be eliglble for incentives your production company must be located in Louisianna. A $300,000 minimum spend is required, and only work perforemed by residents and non-residents in the state of Louissianna. As far as the incentives, there will be a 30% tax credit on qualified direct production. An additional 5% tax credit for payroll expenditures , with no annual cap. Also tax credits can be used to offset income tax liablities , sold back to the state for 85% face value, or brokered on the open market according to filmneworleans.org. Many big named shows and films have been filmed in Lousianna such as: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, True Blood, Duck Dynasty, Treme and many more. The future of filming in Lousianna is looking pretty bright, more then 7 major productions are going on as we speak according to filmneworleans.org.

GEORGIA

Since the state of Georgia passed film tax incentives in 2008, the film industry has been booming in over there. Some of the famous projects that have been shot in Georgia are Walking Dead, The Blind Side, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Hall Pass. So you may be wondering, how do the Georgia Film Incentives work? The Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act provides 20% tax credits for every company that spends at least $500,000 on a film production. The state of Georgia also gives an additional 10% tax credit if the film features a state of Georgia promotional logo. For many film companies this is a great deal. Thanks to these film incentives, Georgia has brought in hundreds of productions. These incentives have also sparked the increase in film studios in Atlanta such as, Pinewood Studios, Screen Gem Studios and many more. Georgia for now at least, is welcoming all filmmakers and film companies with open arms.

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