Film & TV Tax Credit Program

Film Commission

11 Projects Selected for Second TV Allocation of

California’s Expanded Film & TV Tax Credit Program

Latest Round Includes Relocating Series from Vancouver
Returning Home to the Golden State

THE CALIFORNIA FILM COMMISSION today announced the list of 11 projects selected to receive tax credits under the second TV-specific allocation of the state’s expanded Film and Television Tax Credit Program 2.0.
The second TV application period (third for the program overall) was held November 30 – December 6, and drew 32 applications vying for $42 million in tax credit allocation.

The 11 approved projects are categorized as follows:

• Existing TV Series/5 projects
• New TV Series/2 projects
• Movie of the Week/1 project
• Pilots/2 projects
• Relocating TV Series/1 project

The “Existing TV Series” category includes three ongoing series and two pilots that were selected previously as part of the expanded tax credit program’s first TV-specific allocation (see 6/2/15 Film Commission announcement). These five projects remain in production, so any additional episodes or pick-ups from pilots carry over to the latest allocation.

The “Relocating TV Series” category includes the series Mistresses, which will return from Vancouver to California for its fourth season.

Based on data provided with each application, the 11 approved projects will generate an estimated $254 million in direct in-state spending, including $103 million in wages for below-the-line crew members.

“The expanded tax credit program is working exactly as intended,” said California Film Commission Executive Director Amy Lemisch. “It’s making California more competitive for high impact television projects that provide long term jobs for cast and crew members, while boosting spending at support vendors and service providers.”

Lemisch noted that there are now four relocated TV series participating in California’s tax credit program. They include Mistresses from the latest application round, plus Veep (from Maryland), Secrets and Lies (from North Carolina) and American Horror Story (from Louisiana).

mistresses-season-3

“We can’t wait to bring the Mistresses series back to California where we have access to the best crews, the best talent and the best of everything we need,” said Disney Senior VP of Production Gary French. “Our goal is to get superior production and financial value for our investment, and we can get both here at home.”

All projects in California’s expanded film and TV tax credit program are selected based on their jobs ratio score, which ranks each project by wages paid to below-the-line workers, qualified spending (vendors, equipment, etc.) and other criteria.
Of the 21 projects that applied but were not selected for the latest TV-specific allocation, those with a jobs ratio scores ranked in the top 200 percent (i.e., twice the available funding) of applicants have been placed on a waiting list.

The expanded tax credit program allocates tax credits in “buckets” for different production categories, including TV projects, relocating TV series, independent projects and non-independent films. This enables applicants to compete for credits directly against comparable projects. Funding for the current (first) fiscal year totals $230 million, with an additional $100 allocated for the final year of the state’s expiring first-generation tax credit program. Funding in subsequent years will total $330 million per year.

Under both the old and new programs, the California Film Commission awards tax credits only after each selected project: 1) completes post-production, 2) verifies that in-state jobs were created, and 3) provides all required documentation, including audited cost reports.

The next application period for California’s expanded tax credit program is scheduled January 11-24, 2016 and targets feature films and independent projects.

More information about California’s Film and Television Tax Credit Program 2.0, including application procedures, eligibility and program guidelines, is available at http://film.ca.gov/incentives.

Tax Credit Program
Program Year 1

About California’s Film and Television Tax Credit Program 2.0

On September 18, 2014, Governor Brown signed bipartisan legislation to more than triple the size of California’s film and television production incentive, from $100 million to $330 million annually. Aimed at retaining and attracting production jobs and economic activity across the state, The California Film and TV Tax Credit Program 2.0 also extends eligibility to include a range of project types (big-budget feature films, TV pilots and 1-hr TV series for any distribution outlet) that were excluded from the state’s first-generation tax credit program. Other key changes include replacing the prior lottery system with a “jobs ratio” ranking system that selects projects based on wages paid to below-the-line workers, qualified spending (by vendors, equipment, etc.) and other criteria. In addition, “uplifts” are now available for projects that shoot outside the Los Angeles 30-mile zone or have qualified expenditures for visual effects or music scoring/track recording.

About the California Film Commission

The California Film Commission enhances California’s status as the leader in motion picture, television and commercial production. It supports productions of all sizes and budgets, and focuses on activities that stimulate and preserve production spending, jobs and tax revenues in California. Services include administration of the state’s Film & Television Tax Credit Program, permits for filming at state-owned facilities, an extensive digital location library, location assistance and a range of other production-related resources and assistance. More information is available at http://www.film.ca.gov.

Contact: Erik Deutsch, ExcelPR Group (for the California Film Commission) (323) 851-2455 direct / (310) 597-9245 cell / erikd@excelpr.com