Revolution Resource Center

Tax Incentives

Movie production incentives are tax benefits offered state-by-state throughout the United States to encourage in-state film production.

These incentives are designed to attract filmmakers and production companies to a particular location by offering them certain tax benefits or rebates on eligible expenses incurred during production.

Role of Film Commission

Film commissions serve as intermediaries between the filmmaking industry and government authorities. non-profit, public organizations that attract motion media production crews (including movies, television, and commercials) to shoot on location in their respective localities and offer support so that productions can accomplish their work smoothly. They help promote their region as an attractive filming location and provide the necessary support and information for filmmakers to access film tax incentives, thereby contributing to the growth of the local film industry and economy.

The role of a film commission in relation to film tax incentives includes:

  1. Benefit to the production company and shooting location: Film commissions can benefit both the production company and the area they decide to shoot at. The production company can potentially save money by shooting out of state and hiring cheaper below-the-line labor, shooting on location as opposed to building a set in a studio, etc. The economy at the location they shoot at can benefit via profits from hotel rooms, food, gas stations, and any other amenities that the above-the-line labor will use throughout the duration of the filming.
  2. Managing film administration and oversight: Film commissions typically administer the application and approval process for film tax incentives. They collaborate with local government agencies to create the necessary guidelines, criteria, and application procedures for filmmakers to access these incentives. Film commissions also oversee the proper utilization of incentives and ensure that productions meet the necessary requirements to qualify for them.
  3. Promotion and Marketing: Film commissions are responsible for promoting their region as a desirable filming location. This involves showcasing the various advantages of filming there, such as natural landscapes, infrastructure, skilled workforce, and facilities. Part of this promotion includes highlighting the available film tax incentives, which can significantly influence a production's decision to choose a specific location.
  4. Assistance with Applications: Filmmakers often need guidance when applying for film tax incentives due to the complexity of the process. Film commissions provide support by offering information, resources, and assistance throughout the application process. This includes helping filmmakers understand eligibility criteria, required documentation, and deadlines.
  5. Collaboration with Government: Film commissions work closely with government bodies responsible for implementing tax incentives. They help communicate the needs of the filmmaking industry and provide feedback on how the incentives are working. This collaboration ensures that the incentives remain relevant and effective in attracting and retaining film productions.
  6. Data Collection and Reporting: Film commissions gather data on the economic impact of film and television productions in their region. This includes tracking job creation, revenue generated, and other positive effects resulting from the presence of the industry. This data can be used to demonstrate the success and benefits of the film tax incentives to policymakers and the public.
  7. Networking and Industry Support: Film commissions often play a role in connecting filmmakers with local resources, such as location scouts, production crews, and facilities. They facilitate networking opportunities that enable filmmakers to find the necessary talent and services for their projects.
  8. Monitoring Compliance: Film commissions may also be responsible for monitoring compliance with the terms and conditions of the incentives. This could involve verifying that the promised economic benefits are being realized and that the production is meeting its obligations in exchange for receiving the incentives.
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