Expect to keep seeing “Filmed with the support of New York State Governor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Development” in the end credits of each film receiving tax breaks from the state for filming here.
The state’s Film Production Tax Credit program, which provides credits of up to $420 million annually to encourage film projects in New York, is primed to be extended three years to 2029, according to a budget bill.
But the budget bill plots some changes: For example, effective Jan. 1, 2023, a film production company that applies for the credit will have to file a diversity plan with the state, outlining specific goals for hiring a diverse workforce.
That plan also must indicate whether the company intends to participate in training, education and recruitment programs designed to promote and encourage the hiring of New York residents who represent the state’s diversity.
Advocates say the tax credit has helped boost Western and Upstate New York as locations for major film productions. In and around Buffalo, for example, crews have filmed portions of movies such as “Marshall,” “The First Purge,” “A Quiet Place II” and “Nightmare Alley,” and two developers are interested in building film production spaces in the area.
The tax credit applies to production and post-production costs of filming, not including the salaries of actors and actresses. It is worth up to 25% of those costs, with productions upstate eligible for an extra 10% toward labor costs. The program’s annual cost was capped at $420 million through 2025.
The state budget also appears primed to establish an “Empire state digital gaming media production credit,” geared toward helping the state’s video game development industry.
The program would be allocated $5 million a year, according to a budget bill, and the credits would be allocated by the state in the order in which applications are received.
The Entertainment Software Association, a video game industry trade group, had advocated for the establishment of the tax break, pointing to New York’s 141 video game companies, 29 college programs and eight varsity esports teams.
The digital gaming program would run from Jan. 1, 2023 to Jan. 1, 2028.
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