Wilmington filming inquiries dry up as North Carolina incentive downgrade approaches
The Wilmington Regional Film Commission in North Carolina has reported a drop in filming inquiries in the final months of the state’s 25% tax credit. Iron Man 3 filmed in Wilmington but the state will struggle to attract similar shoots when its incentive is downgraded from next year.
As of January, a grant system worth a total of just USD 10 million a year will be available to producers filming in North Carolina. The Wilmington Regional Film Commission says a negative impact on the state’s production industry is already being felt, with a drop of more than 50% in the number of inquiries coming into the office, according to the Port City Daily.
“People just aren’t interested right now,” said Johnny Griffin, Director of the Wilmington Regional Film Office, in comments reported by the outlet: “They know that we’ve got a little bit of money left in our pot, and if they have the right project that may fit in here, then sure, they’ll certainly give us a look. But otherwise, they’re just not very interested.”
Drama series Under the Dome has confirmed that it will stay in North Carolina after filming two seasons locally. It’s likely that the series will get a USD 5 million incentive payment for its third season, leaving just USD 5 million for all other productions filming in North Carolina in 2015.
Keeping a high-profile drama on the scale of Under the Dome is good news for the state, but Griffin explained his longer-term concerns to the outlet: “We’re looking at next year with a lot of uncertainty. We don’t know beyond July 1 what we’ll have for funds in the grant – whether it’ll be more or less.”
North Carolina’s filming incentive was downgraded following vocal political opposition and a fierce debate about how much the state was really benefitting from the programme.
(Main page image: Marvel)
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