Editor’s Note: We didn’t run our usual Saturday Film Incentive News Wrap-Up last week due to the Memorial Day weekend; as a result, this week’s entry represents A LOT of news from the past two weeks.
It’s Saturday, which means it’s time for our weekly look at some of the news about film incentive programs around the country. Now, you know the focus of this site is Oregon’s film and TV industry, and its effect on the state’s economy. It’s important to keep an eye on trends nationwide, though. The film and TV industry is an interdependent organism; what happens around the country affects Oregon’s industry, and what happens in Oregon affects the rest of the country as well.
While each state’s incentive program is different, it’s important to see the “big picture” by keeping an eye on the choices other states have made – to learn from their successes and their mistakes.
So With That…
The extension of Alaska’s film incentive program is a “done-deal.” SB 26, which governor Sean Parnell signed into law this week in Fairbanks, extends the Last Frontier’s film incentive program for an additional ten years.
Washington’s Seattle International Film Festival ended last week with only a small number of the films selected produced in the Evergreen State. The Puget Sound Business Journal took this to be a metric of how Seattle’s film and TV industry is struggling to grow (especially when it’s compared to neighboring Portland.)
Utah’s film commission is trumpeting the success of the Beehive State’s film incentive program, with millions of dollars being spent in the state by a single Russian feature film.
Film and TV-related companies in the Colorado city of Boulder are hoping the Centennial State’s newly increased film incentive program will help to increase tourism in the area and business in a sector which has been “in decline” since the beginning of the recent recession.
Film and TV workers in Louisiana have been celebrating the release of Universal’s Battleship. While the blockbuster film may not be breaking records at the box office, it does represent a significant milestone in Louisiana’s growth as not just a location to shoot film and television, but a location that can “double” for other locations.
Mississippi has seen a rise in film and television production in locations such as Natchez, Jackson, and Delta. The director of the Mississippi film office, however, is working to increase interest in the Magnolia State’s more rural locations, such as Pike County.
Film and TV workers in Michigan are cautiously optimistic about a budget deal reached last week that would add $25 million to the Wolverine State’s recently capped film incentive program. The plan has drawn applause from film executives, and though some are crying foul over the budget priorities such a move represents governor Snyder has signaled that he supports the addition.
Production in Virginia on Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln has brought an estimated $32 million to the Old Dominion according to the Virginia Film Office. While many are celebrating this economic infusion, some in the state are questioning the value of Virginia’s film incentive program.
North Carolina’s film and TV industry is celebrating the addition of a new JJ Abrams series to the slate of projects shooting in the Tar Heel State. The new NBC series, Revolution, was drawn to the state “because of its various locations, experienced crew and vendors, and the state’s dependable film incentive.” The “dependability” of that successful incentive program is at some issue, however, as the program is set to expire at the end of 2013 – a situation some in the state’s General Assembly are working to remedy by proposing an extension of the program.
And finally, outside US Borders… while the Canadian province of Saskatchewan is still under fire for changes it plans to make to its film incentive program, another Canadian province is seeing its film and TV industry grow – Manitoba is experiencing a boom in production… Italy’s Lazio region is reporting that its new film fund has been very successful at keeping productions in and around Rome… Malaysia has launched a %30 tax rebate in an attempt to grow into a regional film & TV production hub… while Abu Dabi’s new film incentive has been getting a lot of attention (and the support of a new film studio) the Middle Eastern emirate of Dubai is also getting into the game by announcing its own incentive program.