California Tax Credit Reels In 10 Features, Including "Sherlock Holmes 3"
Colleen Bell, executive director of the California Film Commission
  • HOLLYWOOD, Calif.
  • --

California’s Film & TV Tax Credit Program 2.0 continues to attract big-budget projects and helps to generate production activity statewide with the addition of Sherlock Holmes 3 and nine other feature films announced by the California Film Commission. 

Together, the projects (five independent, five non-independent) will generate an estimated $310 million in qualified spending (defined as below-the-line wages and payments to in-state vendors). Overall in-state spending will be significantly greater with the addition of above-the-line payments and other expenditures that do not qualify for tax credits under Program 2.0. 

The Sherlock Holmes project alone will generate an estimated $106.8 million in qualified expenditures--the second highest project spending to date for Program 2.0 behind the $118 million in qualified expenditures for Captain Marvel. It is just the latest in a growing list of big-budget project wins for California’s expanded tax credit program.  

“California is once again competing for big-budget film projects because it’s becoming clear that chasing the highest tax credit doesn’t always provide the best value,” said Colleen Bell, executive director of the California Film Commission. “In addition to our tax credit program, we have so many resources that other locales simply can’t match.” 

Based on data provided with each tax credit application, the 10 projects announced today will employ an estimated 1,561 crew, 469 cast and 31,550 background actors/stand-ins (the latter measured in “man days”) over a combined 453 filming days in California. In addition, the projects will generate significant postproduction jobs and revenue for VFX artists, sound editors, sound mixers, musicians and other workers/vendors. 

A significant portion of the production activity and spending for the latest round of projects will occur outside the Los Angeles 30-Mile Studio Zone. Eight of the 10 projects will shoot out-of-zone, spending 89 filming days in regions across the state. Topping the list is Purge 5, with 25 filming days planned in San Diego County. To date, a total of 36 film projects selected for Program 2.0 have accounted for 524 out-of-zone filming days.
 
“A key goal for Program 2.0 is to bring the economic benefits of film and TV production to regions across the state, and that’s a goal we’re achieving on a consistent basis,” added Bell. “It’s great to see so many tax credit projects bring jobs and spending to regions beyond the Los Angeles 30-Mile Studio Zone.” 

In addition to Sherlock Holmes 3 (Warner Bros. Pictures) and Purge 5 (Universal City Studios), the other non-independent films in the latest batch of conditionally approved projects for the tax credit program are: American Pie Presents: Girls Rule (1440 Productions LLC), King Richard (Warner Bros. Pictures) and Little Shop of Horrors (Warner Bros. Pictures). The five indie pictures are Cherry (Big C Productions, LLC), Janis (Atlas Entertainment LLC), Macbeth (POST ITS LLC), Pandora (Pandora Movie LLC) and the Untitled Atomic Monster Project (Giallo Films, LLC).

Lenny Mendonca, the Governor’s chief economic and business advisor and director of the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz), affirmed, “It is fantastic to see the economic impact our entertainment industry has on this state being shared across several regions of California. I hope other industries will also take notice of our diverse regions and the opportunities they hold.” 

A total of 58 film projects applied for tax credits during the June 17–21 application period. 

The next application period for feature film tax credits will be held October 7–11, 2019. 

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