‘The Longest Ride’ talks film incentives

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Submitted: Fri, 07/11/2014 - 3:14am
Updated: Fri, 07/11/2014 - 12:33pm

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Filming for the new Nicholas Sparks movie “The Longest Ride” is well underway in Wilmington, and tonight we got a sneak peek.

Celebrities and Hollywood East types were all over the set, as they filmed at Wilmington’s Cameron Art Museum, but the real star today was the elephant in the room.

On the set today a lot of talk was about the excitement behind another Nicholas Sparks movie being filmed here in the Port City. For the dozens and dozens of folks hard at work on the set, the buzz is about whether jobs like this will be around by the end of the year.

“If you’re going to do a movie that’s based in North Carolina you might as well go to the place you know where they have the best crews,” said Marty Bowen, the producer for “The Longest Ride,” who knows all about film crews.

With film incentives as we know them set to expire, he worries Wilmington is headed down the wrong road.

“The business will move, because that’s what they do. They go to where the money’s cheapest,” Bowen said. He adds losing the incentive could take Wilmington back to the days when film was a second thought.

“It wasn’t the same, and I just think it is gonna go back there,” said Bowen, and he’s not the only one.

“Film equals jobs. It’s exactly like those bumper stickers say,” said Britt Robertson, star of “The Longest Ride.”

From this film to “Under the Dome,” Robertson knows a thing or two about being a leading lady. She’s been in the Port City for almost a year.

“Southern charm, people are friendly and they are kind,” Robertson said of Wilmington.

The thought of losing the incentives, for her, is frustrating.

“It’s insane that the incentive is going away, because there are so many talented, hard-working people in this town,” she said. “It would be sad for them to have to uproot their families and their lives elsewhere.”

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9 Comments on "‘The Longest Ride’ talks film incentives"

2015 years 8 months ago

We only stay for the credits on Marvel movies, because there is always another scene at the end. The credits go by too fast for anyone to catch it all anyway.

2015 years 8 months ago

the current incentives expire at year’s end.

If the logo is already present, why don’t the film supporters get behind a legislator and ask for that special incentive to be added to legislation currently being studied?

This time next week will likely be too late.

With regards to Tammy, I have not seen a good review on it in this media site or Raleigh.

Greg B
2015 years 8 months ago

Guess you don’t watch credits of locally shot productions…Under The Dome and TAMMY are just two if the latest productions that have ALREADY included an NC logo in their credits. sleepy Hollow and Homeland did as well.

2015 years 8 months ago

Just for laughs – how many people do you know outside the film industry that sticks around for the credits? Its my experience that most if not all folks leave the theater…..its anecdotal I know.


2015 years 8 months ago

the Georgia incentive is 20% with an additional 10% available in exchange for publicizing Georgia which has to include the Georgia Peach.

McCrory made a similar suggestion noting he would favor some additional incentive for productions which publicize NC. To date, no attempt made by the supporters to get that tacked on to one of the budget bills.

I suppose its easier for them to get on the WWAY soapbox and spout off with the doom and gloom.

2015 years 8 months ago

““The business will move because that’s what they do they go to where the moneys cheapest,”

Yep thats it – go to where you can get the most money.
Don’t be surprised to see more and more states cap or reduce these incentives.
They are not good investments returning 19 cents for every dollar invested.

Should filming be a “second thought”? Nope – but nor should we subsidize temporary corporations that come and go from here.


2015 years 8 months ago

A few studies were conducted on the return of the NC Film Program.
Even the worst study shows a .61 return…. the best study shows a 1.42 return.
Fact is the Sate is unsure of how to even calculate the Secondary and Tertiary benefits
of this program. They do not have enough information, nor do they seem to have the desire to find out.
Georgia knows and they are doubling down while NC is content to throw the baby out with the bathwater.
Most likely somewhere in the middle lies the truth…. thats got to be worth extending the Sunset for at least one more year in order to get the facts straight before we destroy and industry.

2015 years 8 months ago

Reporter: “So, tell me Miss Robertson, where did you go to school?”

Robertson: “Well, actually, my mom homeschooled me until I moved out to Hollywood in my early teens with my grandmother.”

Reporter: “So did you finish high school?”

Robertson: “Sort of ….”

Reporter: “Any college?”

Robertson: “Uh … no”

Reporter: “So where did you learn about economics or more specifically, the film incentive program?”

Robertson: “Are you talking about all of that really complicated financial stuff that those politicians put together?”

Reporter: “Yea, that program. Do you know how it works?”

Robertson: “Well, I did read on a bumper sticker once that ‘Film equals jobs’ and that was written on a real bumper sticker, so that must be true! Those bad politicians are trying to steal those jobs and force people to relocate just like I did!”

Reporter: “Thank you for taking the time to give us your opinion Miss Robertson.”

Robertson: “No problem. I am an actress, so I know all about stuff like that, and besides my producer told me to talk to you just like you asked him to.”

2015 years 8 months ago

Try this:

“The report findings from jurisdictions where this type of analysis
takes place are virtually unanimous: Film incentives do not provide a
positive economic return for the state treasuries from which they are
funded. The only possible exceptions to this rule—discussed in detail
later—are New York, California, and other states with very modest film
incentives (under 10%, for example). ”

“Of the ten studies of film incentives surveyed in Tannenwald’s
report, only two contain revenue positive findings. Ernst & Young
prepared both of these “studies”; the New Mexico Film Office paid for one,
and the other, for New York, was paid for in part by the MPAA. In the
words of the MPAA, the New York report appears to be “politically
motivated” and “produced by an organization that has already proclaimed
itself antagonistic to tax cuts and incentives” that had “found a way to
examine the data to back up its own prejudiced point of view.” The
irony is that the report prepared for the MPAA is also the one that best
meets the MPAA’s definition of slipshod.”

Got a link to a NON MPAA funded or sponsored study? I’d be glad to read it.
Auditors in many states have MEASURED the economic impact – as opposed to STUDIES which Estimate the impacts.

Sorry but the over whelming evidence for m NON MPAA sources indicates that film incentives are not effective and in fact money losers for states.

As for georgia? You cannot assume any positive benefit nor can I assume negative economic impact because Georgia law PREVENTS the disclosure of state funded studies to the public. IN other words – we don’t know and can’t know.
SC has studies that show a negative impact but they voted for incentives anyway because the head of their film commission and Gov Haley herself have had cameo appearances on TV – which apparently goes a long way to appease egotistical political figures. Gov Sanford vetoed SC film incentives in the budget but got over ridden.
Film incentives are politically motivated tools to bribe businesses to locate here temporarily with the BENEFIT going primarily to out of state employees and companies – not to NC. I am against all targeted incentives, and prefer a lowered tax rate for ALL companies in NC which would provide a more sustainable economic impact.