Warner Bros.‘ three Hobbit films have racked up over half a billion dollars in production costs, reports the AP, citing Kiwi financial filings that say Peter Jackson has spent $676 million New Zealand dollars ($561 million US) so far on his LOTR follow-ups. But that figure’s just the total so far as of March 31 and doesn’t include post-March spending, post-production expenses, and marketing costs. WB has additionally enjoyed $98 million worth of New Zealand tax incentives for shooting in the area. The first of the Hobbit pics, An Unexpected Journey, grossed over $1 billion worldwide after debuting last December. Sequel The Desolation Of Smaug is set to follow with a December 14, 2013 release followed by There And Back Again on December 17, 2014.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo today announced the creation of a new post-production, VFX, and animation company to be established at the Tri-Main Center in Buffalo, NY. Empire Visual Effects and Daemen College will partner on the project which is expected to bring 150 new jobs within five …
The new study provides some statistical ammo for those in the Commonwealth who like the tax break, and are still smarting from a state Department of Revenue report in March that raised questions about whether it makes sense. The …
Ross Lincoln is a Deadline contributor.
Medient Studios, a Los Angeles-based production and distribution outfit with a presence in India, has announced plans to build a $90 million movie studio near Savannah, GA in a deal cleared this week by the Effingham County Industrial Development Authority. Although the deal may end up being good for Georgia, it comes during a precarious time for the Los Angeles-based entertainment economy — even with large-scale expansions underway at NBC Universal, Disney, and Paramount.
Despite an overall increase in movie, TV and commercial production, Los Angeles saw a steep drop in television drama and reality TV production in 2012, a problem the city has attempted to address at least partially by eliminating fees for pilot production. And places like New York, Louisiana, and Michigan as well as Georgia continue to pursue production business aggressively.
“Of course, we’d prefer these kinds of investments be made in the State of California instead of in Georgia,” FilmLA VP of Integrated Communications Philllip Sokoloski told Deadline. “Although the L.A. region has its own studio developments in progress, infrastructure development elsewhere can only intensify the competition we face for valuable film projects and jobs.”
UPDATE 3:30 PM SATURDAY: After Gov. Susana Martinez vetoed the measure on Friday, the state House and Senate repackaged the film and TV tax credit as part of broader legislation to provide tax cuts and other incentives for more types of business. The production tax credit will rise …
Studios enjoyed their best year ever at domestic box offices in 2012 — but still managed to persuade lawmakers that movie and TV investors need a sweet tax deduction to keep the cameras rolling in the U.S. The new agreement to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff collection of spending cuts and tax hikes includes a provision enabling investors in productions shot in the U.S. to deduct the first $15M of the costs or $20M if the shooting takes place in low-income areas. Investors love the break, in Section 181 of the Internal Revenue Code, because they can take the entire deduction in the first year instead of spreading it over several years, and can combine it with state tax credits. It began with the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004 and in 2008 was amended and extended to the end of 2011. But Congress didn’t renew it in time for 2012 productions. No matter: the package that lawmakers just approved will provide the deductions for productions made in 2012 and 2013.
The credit could go as high as 35% for work done upstate — where officials are especially eager to promote economic development. Since the program began in 2004, the state has issued $1.04B in tax credits for projects with an estimated economic value of $7.57B.
Here’s today’s release:
Since the state began offering tax credits to support the film and television industry in 2004, producers have spent more than $7 billion in New York. The new law signed today is designed to expand state support by specifically focusing on attracting post-production work to communities in all corners of the state.
An MPAA-commissioned study released by Ernest & Young today concludes that state film incentive programs are good for local economies – and not just if you work in the business. “The economic benefits to residents extend beyond the production activities themselves and include increased activity by suppliers to the film industry and increased consumer spending from higher incomes,” says Robert Cline, E&Y’s National Director of State and Local Tax Policy Economics and co-author of the Evaluating the Effectiveness of State Film Tax Credit Programs study. Thirty-seven states currently have film credit programs. The programs, with Louisiana, Illinois, Florida and Georgia among the most utilized by studios in recent years, draw from an estimated $1.2 billion in tax dollars annually nationwide. While providing few hard numbers, the E&Y report notes that some of the long term benefits a state with a film incentive program can enjoy are increased tourism, if the location ‘plays itself’ in productions, infrastructure development and seasoned local crews which can lead to increased tax revenues, spending and investment.