‘Sleepy Hollow’ leaving for Atlanta if renewed

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Submitted: Sun, 01/18/2015 - 2:00am
Updated: Sun, 01/18/2015 - 11:29pm By:

By Rob Owen
Special to the StarNews

Fox Television Group chairman and CEO Dana Walden said if it’s renewed for a third season, “Sleepy Hollow” will move production from Wilmington following the demise of the North Carolina film tax credit program.

“We’ve explored other places to produce that show and I will tell you it came down to Atlanta and Vancouver and it looks like we’ll head to Atlanta,” she said following a news conference at the Television Critics Association winter 2015 press tour.

Last year, the N.C. General Assembly opted to let the state’s tax incentive program benefiting film and television projects expire. Lawmakers replaced it with a grant program that will dole out no more than $10 million total to qualified productions this year. The most each production can receive under the new program is $5 million.

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  • 10101 says:

    The NC legislature has already done that by commissioning several independent studies. Apparently you haven’t taken the time to read them.

    What would be the point of funding yet another study if you won’t even look at the ones already completed?

  • jj says:

    We have business close all the time. The workers have to move to where the business goes or find other work. This is no different. I am tried of my tax dollars going to companies that makes millions.

    I would rather my tax dollars go to help teachers than to these companies.

  • jj says:

    Have to say I love the show and I hope they continue it. However, I don’t want my tax dollars spend for this.

  • Machiavel says:

    the study from the “John Locke” foundation? The one that tells us film is bad and fracking is good? The one that has already been found to be a complete fallacy? That study? By the way the new numbers estimate a 300 million dollar loss in revenue for the state. Oh and hopefully those harmless household chemicals that the John Locke foundation tells you are used in fracking don’t end up in your well water. Of course you might have a little trouble finding out what they are, since they pushed legislation through to make it illegal to disclose the names of the chemicals. But keep bashing the evil film industry.

  • guest 1234 says:

    Thats a big if. I appreciate the income it brings Wilmington, but lets be honest, who really watched it past the 4th or 5th episode?

    DON’T make statements like this, it is basically a threat. For a show that is barely hanging on, they’re just using this threat to shut it down. Nevermind the story line won’t carry it through the next season. See ya…..

  • Bennie Lee says:

    If Wilmington wants it to stay, they need to collect the money in town.

    People in Gastonia doesn’t get a thing, not to mention the state tax dollars it has cost.

  • Guest7969 says:

    of all…government shouldn’t be propping up businesses…PERIOD. ESPECIALLY not the film industry who has posted record profits…These are the SAME people who support punishing the EVIL 1%, but have no problems stealing tax dollars from the taxpayer…SCREW HOLLYWOOD..and SCREW THEIR TAX CREDITS! Don’t let the door hit you in the rear when you leave!

  • anthony nobilio says:

    Please investigate and report the cost to NC on revenue lost due to SLeepy Hollow moving to GA. I do taxes for several film employees and producers that live in NC. Before the incentives, each had taxes paid to numerous states with little to NC. With incentives in place up to 100% of their state taxes was paid to NC. Not to mention the cost to the local small business community and state sales tax lost. Legislature owes us the net result.

  • Heimie Schmelter says:

    …join the wagon train on its trek to the next film location! The film industry is nomadic anyway and moves to wherever they get the required scenery, landscape, climate and of course…”free stuff”. This is one of the very reasons the legislators cut the incentives. The film industry does not provide much substantial, full time, reliable, consistent or long term employment for anyone. IF there is a film or TV series here and IF there is a another season produced, there may be need for locals, there MAY be a few jobs. Other than that, the film industry just goes wherever the mighty wind blows…and THAT will always be to THEIR advantage.

    Incentives will never change any of those attributes!

  • ILM Raised says:

    What you all fail to recognize is that these are tax credits… not payments. It prevents film productions from paying as much in taxes as otherwise. Further, it has no effects on the millions in salaries paid to employees, restaurants that serve the film industry, homes sold to film workers, etc. The film industry makes Wilmington WAY more money than it costs. I should say… the film industry made way more money than it cost.

    The true reason that the legislature nixed the film “incentives” is because film workers are liberal artsy types, who support and vote contrary to the current party in charge.

    It will be interesting to see what industries get incentives over the next few years. You can bet that there will be incentives, but only to those that support the current folks in charge… not saying its a bad thing… that’s just the way politics works.

  • Rusty says:

    I’d rather my tax Dollars went to film rather than housing projects.

  • Guest Reply Redux says:

    We all know what the GOP stands for and it ain’t The Arts!

  • guest, just another says:

    Tax credits. Incentives. Whatever you title it comes down to one thing. Money. Benjamins. Dead presidents. Bones. Clams.

    Yes its politics, no, its NOT who you vote for. Those “credi-centives” make it easier for the film business to operate, but it also removes bank from the state/county/city. Money that is needed (and often wasted) on our infrastructure and services. Want roads without holes? Takes money. Want gangs to go away? That costs. If this state legislature wasn’t going to remove the incentives, the next would. To pay for that “free” community college, that by the way, has to be supplemented by the states. That’s not “free”.

    You or I don’t get tax breaks, so we’ll pay for that difference in what it not coming in. Our taxes will go up to cover that difference. “Life” doesn’t cost what it did 5, 10, 20 years ago. Minimum wage goes up, taxes go up, cost of milk goes up. Get it? Its not a GOP/DEM thing. Its a money thing.

  • ILM Raised says:

    Tell me this… let’s say taxes on film productions is normally 15%. At 15%, film industry goes to another state that get’s 10%. NC lowers its tax to 8%, and woes back film industry. Does NC make more money at 8% or 15%?

    Getting rid of film incentives does NOT make more money for NC. It costs NC tax revenue, because 15% of 0 is 0.

  • Guest Reply Redux says:

    Wilmywoods new name 2015!!!
    And where did all that $$$ go that (Wilmington/& NC) made off of the flix made there in permits/etc. since the early 80’s????
    Maybe if spent wiser by the Powers that be (Cities/State)..the movie B-ness wouldn’t have had such a bad Rap!!
    At least Atlanta…with all of its Stinky pollution as someone blabbed out…is making money…and not hoping and wishing that Some Big Business will come there to replace it. Maybe a new Mall will be built soon???
    Big business require Incentives too. Without it….Notta!
    Sleep Well…Wilmy X!!

  • guest, just another says:

    So if not with film, then where? Are we to be held hostage by EVERY industry? The difference between film and anything else, lets just say “widgets”, is that widgets are fixed. There is a plant, there are defined structures and efforts that can be counted by the state. It is much harder, although it still happens, to pick up and move a complete fixed base industry.

    So you’ll say that all industries get some sort of benefit. Sure. But when those benefits are cut or adjusted, they don’t often threaten to up and move. Film is too fluid, there will always be that “threat”. You can’t cater to everyone, and at some point you just have to decide if our budget can or should be able to count on an industry like film that can walk at any time. Obviously they have.

  • Rick Wilson says:

    And if it is not renewed who is responsible for the job losses? This is a perfect example of never ending incentives. Unlike a new industry that may receive one time incentives for a start up, the movie industry demands them constantly…..even for a project that is 2 years old. Couple this with constant layoffs that tax the unemployment system for much more than they ever pay in and you have an industry designed and operated off the rest of the public. The NC legislature figured it out when they used INDEPENDENT studies instead of tainted, self serving studies put out by the movie industry. Georgia will figure it out also, hopefully before needed state programs fall to the wayside to fund the billionaire beggars known as the movie industry executives. An industry that pays it’s stars millions per project do not need taxpayer incentives. An industry that uses it’s rank and file workers as pawns in a high stakes game of corruption and bribery (pay us or we will leave) needs to be prosecuted instead of rewarded with any tax payer dollars. NC figured it out….sooner or probably much later the rest of the country will also.

  • Concerned says:

    Some of you make well thought out comments both for and against incentives. The rest of the lame remarks are, as you can tell, made by people that are just plain ignorant! It’s fairly easy to figure out which comments come from the ill informed. I have said before, do away with all incentives all across the country. That will level the playing field tremendously. Back in the late 80’s and early 90’s NC was third in the country in film production behind California and New York. Before any incentive. Those days are long gone! The only way to keep film jobs in ANY state is to have a competitive incentive package. It’s too bad that the folks that the MAJORITY of NC citizens voted into office don’t understand this. Good luck to all you displaced workers out there. I’m sure the ones of you that have enough experience will be fine breaking in to other markets. The kids with just a few years in will have a much harder time. If you are good at your craft you will find work. Remember this crazy business is not for everyone. Thank you.

  • jeff smith says:

    What good for the goose is good for the gander. Why should the film people get all this free and the rest have to pay that is not fair period. N C is waking up and that is great.and it time.

  • Concerned says:

    Hey just to let you know, the crime rate per capita in tiny little Wilmington is much greater than in the Atlanta area. Talk about smell, ever walk downtown on a Saturday or Sunday morning. The urine and the alcohol smells will make you want to throw up. Also it is much easier to drive through Atlanta at any given time than trying to maneuver Market St. or Oleander Dr. Again keep your ill informed lame comments to yourself.

  • Heimie Schmelter says:

    Enjoy the traffic, crime and smell of Atlanta!

  • Vog46 says:

    for capping the incentive program.
    No matter how much NC forks out if the show is not popular it gets cancelled and ALL TV shows get cancelled.
    The work is part time and depends upon AUDIENCE RECEPTION to insure renewal from season to season.

    It is time for the NC Film industry to stand on its own.


  • Guestman says:

    To paraphrase Ross Perot; that giant sucking sound is all of the film and tv business going south.
    This is the most short-sighted rabble that we have ever had masquerading as lawmakers that I have ever seen. Let’s get rid of the film industry and get real business in here to pollute our waters and have oil wash up on our beaches is what they appear to be saying. Idiots.

  • GuestFilm says:

    Thanks to our short-sighted State Legislators, we’ll be lucky if they film a commercial here.

  • kingstonman says:

    Hope they don’t let the door hit them in the rump!

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