In the end, they struck a tax credit deal that probably would have made Frank Underwood proud. Today Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley and House Of Cards producers Media Rights Capital announced they have found a way to keep the Netflix series in the state for its upcoming third season. “Spoiler alert: we’re going to keep the 3700 jobs and more than 100 million dollars of economic activity and investment that House Of Cards generates right here in Maryland,” O’Malley said. “Media Rights Capital has been a great supporter of the people and entertainment community in Maryland and we couldn’t be happier to continue our partnership.” Despite some ups and downs the past few months that saw production held up, the Kevin Spacey-starring series will now get $11.5 million this year for production via the 2014 Film Production Tax Credit program and a General Assembly authorization of $7.5 million in grants in the 2015 budget. That cobbled together figure is an increase from what HoC had gotten for a single season before. MRC, which had planned to start shooting the third season of the D.C.-set drama in early spring, received about $26M in Maryland tax credits for its first two season, according to reports.
With Season 3 expected to start production later this year, today’s new agreement comes just days after Netflix’s Ted Sarandos told Wall Street analysts that all sides were engaged in “ongoing negotiations” to keep the show in the state where it had filmed its first two seasons. His comments were on the heels of Maryland legislators failing to reach a tax credit arrangement for the show before this year’s session ended earlier this month. That sudden shift of political fortune occurred after everything looked locked in when the Maryland General Assembly previously approved new legislation on April 7 to increase the tax credit allocation ceiling. Now in the end, road bumps and all, it’s all worked out just like one of Underwood’s long tail schemes – minus the body count.
Deadline's Dominic Patten - tip him here.