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As entertainment production costs continue to fluctuate, cities in the U.S. have become more proactive in trying to entice production companies to film in their area and draw in local spend. Among the content, over-the-top and TV landscape panels at NATPE 2018, held January 16-18 in Miami, some of the host city's leadership discussed tax credits and how the city tries to be more appealing than other locales.
The "Show Me the Money!" panel focused on incentives and opportunities in South Florida. The panelists discussed Florida's main production competitor: Georgia. Moderator Bruce Orosz, CEO of ACT Productions, and panelists Sandy Lighterman, the film and entertainment commissioner for Miami-Dade County, and Eva Silverstein, the city of Miami Beach's director of tourism, culture, and economic development, touched on the state of Florida's lack of support and how this has led some counties/municipalities to take matters into their own hands and offer incentives.
Panelists noted that "Moonlight," the winner for Best Picture at the 89th Academy Awards, had several scenes filmed in Miami at a decent budget. In addition, the Matthew McConaughey-led film "The Beach Bum" and MTV's "Jersey Shore Family Vacation" are currently being produced in South Florida. A main goal for these counties is to make it feasible for production companies to consider South Florida for future productions.
Some of the features/requirements of Miami-Dade County's TV, film, and entertainment production incentive program include the following:
- With a minimum of $1 million in Miami-Dade County on qualifying payroll and qualifying expenses, scripted and unscripted shows can benefit from filming in South Florida.
- The maximum grant amount that will be awarded per production project is $100,000.
- Each project is required to hire a minimum of 50 main cast and crew that are Miami-Dade County residents.
Currently, production companies have more than the usual two options: California and New York. With the number of productions rising per year, it is wise for states to ensure that producers know about these initiatives. Production in certain states not only benefit TV/film production budgets, but also the states benefit from the economic impact. Productions in Georgia have been dominating for the past few years with appealing incentives.
Some of the features/requirements of the Georgia production incentive program include the following:
- A $500,000 minimum spend to qualify.
- 20% base transferable tax credit and 10% Georgia Entertainment Promotion uplift can be earned by including an embedded Georgia logo on approved projects.
- Both resident and non-resident workers' payrolls qualify.
Economics of TV & Film is a regular feature from Kagan, a group within S&P Global Market Intelligence's TMT offering, providing exclusive research and commentary.