Written by Shona Smith on May 30, 2019. Posted in Incentive News

Japan launches pilot incentive scheme

Japan has announced a pilot filming incentive offering up to 20% of production costs to large-scale overseas TV and film projects. The scheme is currently taking applications. 

While a number of regional commissions have had some funds in place for some time, the pilot scheme is Japan’s first national scheme.

Although Japan has high end studios and cutting-edge equipment that complements its diverse range of urban and rural locations, the costs associated of working in Japan has hindered substantial levels of inwards productions.

Now, for productions in receipt of a 20% incentive, costs are more competitive with neighbouring nations such as South Korea, which already has an incentive in place, and Taiwan.

Live action films, feature films TV dramas and online dramas are eligible for the support and the funding will be 20% of the production cost. A maximum funding cap which is yet to be determined will be put in place.

In terms of eligibility criteria, productions must fit into one of three categories. For projects scheduled to be released, screened, broadcast or distributed in over ten countries, direct production costs in Japan must exceed JPU300 million. Other productions must either meet direct production costs in Japan exceeding JPY800 million  or total production costs exceed JPY3 billion - with direct production costs in Japan exceeding JPY200 million.

In addition, the local government and the film commission at the filming location shall support the project in ways such as extra recruitment, subsidies from the local government, and publicity campaigns.

Japanese production groups or companies are the only bodies eligible to apply, and the deadline for primary applications is June 10, 2019.

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