North Carolina production spending rises but filming incentive future still uncertain
North Carolina has seen an increase in production spending for the first half of 2014, compared to the same period last year. Television dramas like Sleepy Hollow and Under the Dome have helped drive a filming boost, but the future of the state’s filming incentive remains uncertain.
Production spending in North Carolina reached USD268 million in the first six months of the year, according to figures from the North Carolina Film Office, marking a small increase on 2013.
North Carolina’s production industry has been driven by a 25% filming tax credit, but the programme is very controversial. The incentive expires at the end of this year and is likely to be replaced by a less generous grant package, with higher spending brackets triggering smaller support sums.
“It is ironic that in this time when we are looking at the incentive, and deciding whether or not to extend, we are having an off-the-chart year,” said Johnny Griffin, director of the Wilmington Regional Film Commission, in comments to Halifax Media Group.
In recent years North Carolina has also attracted major feature productions like the first Hunger Games film and Iron Man 3, but it’s since become most popular as a filming location for high-end TV dramas.
Atlanta, New Orleans and New York are currently among the most popular filming cities in the US, largely as a result of their generous filming incentives. This year New York became the most popular city in North America for drama TV pilots, taking the top spot from Los Angeles for the first time.
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