The California Film Commission has selected 30 feature films to receive the next round of California tax credits – movies that the commission estimates will generate $1.17 billion in overall production spending in the state and create 4,564 jobs for crew members, 1,212 gigs for actors and more than 48,000 days of work for background performers and stand-ins.
The 30 projects, for which the Commission has reserved $149.2 million in tax credit allocations, include 19 indies and 11 studio films, four of which – Atlas, Beverly Hills Cop 4, Unfrosted and an untitled film from Amazon Studios – are expected to spend an estimated $553 million in the state, including $439.2 million in qualified spending, which are wages to below-the-line workers and payments to in-state vendors – the only qualified portions of each project’s budget that are eligible for tax credits.
The CFC notes that the list of approved projects is subject to change, as applicants may withdraw from the tax credit program, in which case their reservation of credits will be reassigned to one or more projects on its waitlist.
“We’re leveling the playing field for the types of big-budget films targeted so aggressively by jurisdictions with more sweeping incentive programs,” said Colleen Bell, the Commission’s executive director. “Filmmakers want to work here in the Golden State and understand that chasing the highest incentive doesn’t ensure the best value.”
The $330 million annual tax credit program, which was increased to $420 million this year and next year, is designed to retain and attract production jobs and boost economic activity across the state.
The 30 incentivized films, which will also generate significant post-production jobs and revenue for California VFX artists, sound editors, sound mixers, musicians and others, are expected to account for more than 1,000 filming days in the state.
Pointing out that the incentives program is truly a statewide initiative, the CFC noted that a third of the projected filming days on the chosen films will take place outside of Los Angeles’ so-called “30-Mile Studio Zone.” This, the commission says, will be “the highest number of out-of-zone filming days for any round of projects in the history of California’s tax credit program.”
Filming is planned to occur in 16 different counties across the state – from San Diego to Humboldt and Marin to Kern. Out-of-zone days will be led by The Long Walk, with all 40 days of its filming outside the zone, and Dope Little Creatures, with all 33 of its filming days outside the zone.
“Our tax credit program continues to bring jobs and opportunity statewide,” Bell said. “The current round of projects will directly impact more regions of the state than any round in the program’s history, and that’s a terrific milestone.”
“I’m so excited that our film has been awarded the California tax credit,” said Jennifer Garner, who will produce and star in Family Leave, one of the 30 films that made the cut. “As an actor, producer and mother, it’s impossible to overstate what shooting locally means to me and other families in this industry. I’ve been lucky to work with some of the greatest crew members of my career here in California, and I’m looking forward to reconnecting with some of my home team friends on this project.”
Story By David Robb | Deadline