make WWAY your homepage  Become a fan on facebook  Follow us on twitter  Receive RSS Newsfeeds  MEMBERS: Register | Login

Hollywood trip shows tax incentive not enough

READ MORE: Hollywood trip shows tax incentive not enough

Gov. Bev Perdue and the North Carolina Film Council spent last week in Hollywood trying to entice filmmakers to come to Hollywood East. They returned with knowledge and a plan.

The Governor and the Film Council thought increasing the state's tax incentive for film projects to 25 percent was what they needed. Turns out it wasn't enough.

In an interview we did with Gov. Perdue last month, she didn't seem too clear about our state's film incentives calling the reason talent and production is leaving the state "some kind of million-dollar cap." She found out in LA that cap on the tax incentive is capping interest in projects coming here. Now she says she is ready to fix it.

Producer Tim Bourne is well aware of the problem with the cap. He went with the Governor and the Film Council to LA. He says the only thing keeping filmmakers from coming to our state is money.

"A lot of people have this misconception that movies is all about red carpets and cocktail parties with actors and stars and stuff like that," Bourne, who was an executive producer for "The Blind Side," said. "That's not what it is. It's about the carpenter. It's about the electrician. It's about the driver, the people behind the scenes. Those are jobs. Those are people who live here, who spend money here. They buy cars. They buy homes. They buy aspirin. This is money the state needs to have and needs to retain. Otherwise everyone's moving out of state."

Now the future of film in our state lies in the hands of the governor and the state legislature. Bourne and other Film Council members plan to go to Raleigh in may when legislators reconvene to continue the push to fix the state's film incentive

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


Tax incentives in NC

The Producers comment was really pretty inane--everyone knows differently. All they care about is fast cars,money,fancy houses and faster woman. I would not trust them--they will tell you anything to get what they want and then turn...

Some folks are paying attention

In a poll released last week, our fearless Governor who never saw a trip she would not take -- if it was on the state nickel, was found to be falling even further in the polls.

She's even fallen below 50% with the polled Democrats who helped put her in office.

The results are so dismal, she is projected to be a drag on the Democratic agenda in the Legislature this term.

Hopefully, they have enough sense to realize her spending proposals will lead to an even greater deficit which is currently projected for the next fiscal year at $790,000,000.

What's it going to take in furloughs, pay cuts and benefit cuts to make that up? Not enough there to do that.

Around Charlotte, they're projecting 1,000 jobs cut by the Education Department. That's a lot of jobs. And they'll still be cutting it close to breaking even.

Maybe she'll have to start wacking into the appointees who serve at her pleasure; get six figure salaries; state health benefits; and might work fewer than 10 days per month. There's a frightening thought for some.

And maybe she'll lead by example and forgo salary until the budget is balanced.

Let's clear the air...

So let me explain what is going on here...

A few years ago there were no incentives for filming in any state in the US... Canada wanted to lure more movie production to there major cities so those major, Toronto, Vancouver... they started giving tax incentives... Well Hollywood producers obviously took them up on there offer. Filming in the US outside of LA, NY became almost non-existent. So some states which had seen a lot of film production before Canada's power move started enacting incentives also. It's not like NC wanted this to happen, it was the doing of Canada that started this whole trend...

Now that you have had your history lesson listen up. Almost all of the local film crew members were here before these incentives started to be a factor on where productions shoot there films. They had already bought houses, started small business, paid taxes!!!! Us in the film "Biz" don't even like the incentive idea but it is a necessary evil in order to bring work and jobs here... where we live... Do you honestly think we enjoy going to Raleigh and begging for help... absolutely not!!! The case for eliminating the caps is a solid one. The bigger the film budget, the bigger the taxes paid to the state, and the state gives back 25% of the taxes paid into the system. It's a win-win situation, we keep people employed, and the state brings outside business into the state.

Many of you are on here arguing these facts not because you don't like the incentives. But because you have this stereotypical view of the Film Crew Members. You think we are "Glorified Carnival Workers", and Hippies, and Gypsies, and VooDoo Kings and Queens. When in all honesty we are probably your neighbor, or even in the same social circles. We are everyday people just like yourself trying to make a living doing what we know how to do, and what we love to do. It's all part of the "American Dream" right?? Well if you are a true American, don't blame the people, blame the system. There is a whole lot more wrong with this state than giving a 25% tax rebate to a business that is dumping millions into the local economy don't you think...

Everyone here is ignorant of the incentives!!!

To everyone who has posted on this page...

Let me explain the incentives for you. Let's take an average feature film ... ie, 20 million dollars. Every bit of that 20 Million would be spent in North Carolina in order to qualify for our state's incentives. The money would be spent on Actors (Who would have to pay state income taxes), Crew, Food, Hotel Rooms, Transportation, Gas, Rent, Equipment, Building supplies for sets, Furniture, ... the list goes on and on... They finish filming... The money is already been paid into the system. The State cuts the production a check for 5 Million... The State makes 15 MILLION Dollars on the deal. There is no subsidizing involved. It is in the most basic words a "rebate".

Now since we have that cleared up. I'm sick and tired of listening to some of you morons on here calling film crew members carnival workers. These crew members spend thousands of dollars to go to UNCW to attain a Film Degree. They go on set, in a incredibly competitive enviroment and prove themselves time and time again. These people are father's, Mother's, Young adults.. Family people. Before you judge someone at least know who you are talking about.

The film business brings in hundreds of millions of dollars a year to NC. If you can't appreciate that then maybe you should move out of the state. Without incentives no production would come here. That is the difference in this industry than any other in the state yet everyone always want to compare,"Well why not give this company more"... the simple answer is because they are here, they have made long-term investments in NC. Film productions come and they go, so that is why it is so vital to have incentives in place to keep the revolving door of productions turning...

Ditto..... You hit the nail

You hit the nail on the head with this statement Film Worker.
Welcome to Wilmington (where the narrow minded flourish in staggering amounts).....
Wilmington....where its citizens constantly complain about their local Government here, but "would not" petition them out of office if their lives depended on it!!!!
Sure....citizens rally with their so called Tea Parties....another sickening BUZZ WORD....but as far as addressing Washington and their voted in reps....they'd rather see an article about their rallies in the local news....and as per usual their efforts gradually fade away>>>>>.
Welcome to Wilmington Film Makers of America. Soon you will simply leave this Palm Beach of NC and then the dollars you fed into the community will be missed, and City Council will "again" have an excuse to raise taxes to cover their butts.........once more!!!

Your math stinks

Sorry! That $15 million did not go "to the state." It went to all those people you listed, who provided goods or services. "The state" collected a very small portion of that money through taxes on the goods and services and income taxes.

But "the state" then writes out a check for $5 million of the taxpayers' money to the production company.

$2 million (+/-) in, $5 million out?

That's a good deal to the taxpayer?

The most entertaining part of this issue is that the blackmail never ends. As soon as one state or location raises their incentives, it starts a whole new round of '"We need more money!"

You people won't be happy until "the state" is paying the entire production cost.

I hear Canada is very nice this time of year...

Your Math Stinks...

Excuse me... if you need a calculator... I'll wait while you go retrieve it...

This is how it breaks down in "Common Sense" terms...

The money goes to small businesses, workers, and local building supply companies, hotels, restaurants, etc. etc. etc......

Everyone getting money from the production is a taxpayer of NC!!!!!

They buy houses here, the eat here, they do everything every other law biding citizen of any state does.

The honest to god truth is the state is only paying 25% of the taxes they have already paid into the system... let me say it again so you understand... If a 20 million dollar movie comes to town, and there "Tax Bill" is lets say 6 Million well they would get 25% of that 6 million dollars in Taxes back... ie, 1.5 million dollars...

Now I don't want to lose you so keep up... That means the state made, not paid out but made 4.5 Million.

How is this not a good deal?????

tax incentives

I'm an american producer working on a french film filming in Florida in 2012. The production is only able to film in Florida because of these tax incentives. I think some people in this thread need to see the bigger picture which is that we will invest 2 million dollars in your states thanks to tax incentives. If they didn't exsist, we would film elsewhere or not at all. And yes producers do choose to film in Florida because when you are dealing with a 20 million dollar film, every incentive counts. And a local Floridian will be able to buy aspirine because of it!

govt picking winners

Treat all businesses equally and lower taxes for all. Why is a film industry job better or more privileged? Do they tend to vote for Demorats?

If there is an incentive, pay for it with a tax on movie theaters. Those that watch the movies can pay for them and the incentives. Surely movie watchers would not mind paying another buck or 2 for "incentives".

It's about the "juice"

""A lot of people have this misconception that movies is all about red carpets and cocktail parties with actors and stars and stuff like that," Bourne, who was an executive producer for "The Blind Side," said. "That's not what it is. It's about the carpenter. It's about the electrician. It's about the driver, the people behind the scenes."

That's exactly why their first on the list of credits.

Everyone knows that's not true. It's about the money they can save and spend on cars, homes or liquor and pocket thru "creative accounting".

Been there, seen that.

So why not remove the cap and make it free to film here. Even some added money to make the producer feel wanted.

In reality, it's the same 300 people working getting the benefits of this lunacy.

We got along before them, we won't even miss em.

Soon there will be a new Circus in town.

Quote from article..."That's

Quote from article..."That's not what it is. It's about the carpenter. It's about the electrician. It's about the driver, the people behind the scenes. Those are jobs. Those are people who live here, who spend money here. They buy cars. They buy homes. They buy aspirin. This is money the state needs to have and needs to retain. Otherwise everyone's moving out of state."

This is the very reason that EVERYONE in the state needs to embrace the Fair Tax concept. If you put more money in the worker's pockets, they will spend more money which the state needs. Even those people that are not paying taxes currently! The only problem is that the govt. officials will lose their carrot to dangle in front of voter's noses.

Hollywood Blackmail

Sleazy Hollywood executives--playing one state against another-- demand more payback from North Carolina before they will agree to make films here. Ungrateful and shamelessly mercenery, Hollywood moguls keep upping the ante.

Since the temporary film productions may boost the area's economy a little--just a little, I don't think NC should offer a single more incentive. Not one more dime!

After all, these movie people are nothing more than glorified carnival workers taking us for a ride. That's all, folks.

Glorified Carnival Workers!

Thanks, Guestateria!

You said it all--"glorified carnival workers".


Well, let 'em move

How odd that the liberal elite think everyone should pay taxes except their buddies in the entertainment industry.

"You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours."

Hate to disagree with ya'

Hate to disagree with ya' Commonsense... All some of us in the entertainment industry are trying to do is get some crumbs from the CORPORATE WELFARE table!

Panhandling is panhandling

So corporate welfare is bad, but Hollywood welfare is okay? What's the difference? Lionsgate, Disney, and Sony are just as much corporations as Exxon Mobil, Boeing, or Wells Fargo, and just because it's an independent production company doing business with them doesn't make it any nobler.

Please point out another industry that demands state and provincial leaders drop to their knees and pucker up.

The best thing for everyone (except the West Coast prima donas) would be for every single state to tell the entire industry to go to blazes, and that that they'll pay full taxes from now on.

How come you want to take

How come you want to take tax breaks away from the entertainment industry, but you are complaining about the tax breaks Obama is taking away from companies from Caterpilar?

Very simple reason

The 3500 major corporations that are facing upwards of $14 billion in charge-downs EARNED that deduction by agreeing to take on the task of providing prescription drug coverage to their retirees, thus offloading the task from Medicare.

The deduction was part and parcel of the deal struck in 2007. The government would subsidize (not pay for) the cost, but the companies could still deduct the entire cost.

Why else would businesses have taken on this responsibility. To be nice guys????

You wrong(again)

What your post said proves your wrong.If they're not nice guys why would they do it? They must be making a profit.The fact is they were already paying for their workers and when Bush's law passed they were worried they would stop so they made a deal to give them $1300 a person and allow them to write it off their taxes.And yes their all lying.You can say I'm wrong all you want but I don't listen to Fox.

Sure, pal! It's a massive CEO conspiracy

Please read the WSJ of March 31st, specifically the OpEd piece that discusses this in depth. Your attention is drawn to, "Financial Standard Accounting Board's 1990 statement No. 106, which requires businesses to IMMEDIATELY RESTATE their earnings in light of their expected future retiree health liabilities."

Just because you don't LIKE the numbers doesn't mean that the numbers aren't true and in accordance with current GAAP and SEC requirements. The companies can't change general accounting requirements to make this rotten egg of a law smell any better.

BTW, don't miss the GREAT piece in the WSJ of March 30th, "Why the Rich Can't Pay for Obamacare." It gives a full history of the past failures of soaking the rich, how it never pans out, how the numbers that are predicted never come to fruition, and how they wouldn't be rich in the first place if they didn't have the savvy and know-how to escape the punitive taxation.

A FEW people can't pay for healthacre for all. Every single taxpayer will eventually be paying for this. Meanwhile, if we beat up the largest corporations, fewer people will be paying taxes because fewer people will be working.


That proves it,an OpEd in the WSJ. Let me say your right, the only thing they will be doing is paying back some of the money that Bush gave them.

BTW why would I want to read something about the rich saying you know what to the poor?

Keep that mind closed

It's the surest way to keep your wallet empty.

You go ahead and wait around for the government to take care of you. They've been SOOOO successful at it wherever it's been tried.

You may not LIKE Economics, but you better accept it. The rich can't pay down this massive debt by themselves. So when YOUR taxes rise, don't forget who warned you.

BTW, would that be the George Bush who gave every single American taxpayer a tax break? The George Bush who only cut his "rich buddies'" marginal tax rates by 3%, but cut the poorest Americans' tax rate by 5%?

That George Bush?

Yeah.....everything wrong in the world is his fault, right?


you keep laying out facts. The mindless entitlement recipients keep responding with mindless blather.

They can not see that the governments which dispense all their entitlements are running out of money.

The State can not issue tax refund checks on a timely basis.

The Asians are laughing when Hilary or Geitner try to peddle more US debt.

They don't even have the sense to question what happens to their entitlements when the percentage of working taxpayers falls below 50% and government checks start bouncing.

And you're right, they view "W" as the cause of all evil. He wasn't even born; but I am certain in their minds he was responsible for the Great Depression and WWII.

I wonder if they will view the Annointed One with an equally jaundiced eye when the only ones with shelter and food are the ones who can live off the land; grow crops; raise livestock; and patrol their farms with scatter guns to keep the leeches and weasels from getting into the hen house.


Now your reading things that's not there.I didn't blame anything on Bush.You must think that giving companies that sweet deal was wrong. I'm not waiting for anyone to take care of me I been doing fine on my own.I bet you didn't complain about how much the tax cuts added to the debt. Your only complaint may have been that you were only getting a 3% cut.Bush knew he didn't have to worry about raising taxes.You keep saying rich people pay most of the tax so your arguement don't hold much water.I think everyone knows that taxes will rise at some point,but thanks for the warning anyway.Also the poorest Americans,as you call them, that was only paying federal payrole taxes got nothing,so not every single American taxpayer got a tax break.

BTW, I'd rather have 3% of a $1000000.00 than 5% of $10000.00.

Hollywood isn't

Hollywood isn't Wilmington... We know that Hollywood is "getting theirs" and you are likely right.... let's get rid of all the subsidies and ALL aid, including foreign and let the economy get back to work.

Until that happens, I'm stuck playing the hand I'm dealt.

Gov Perdue Hollywood Incentives

Gov Perdue needs to get her head out of Hollywood and start thinking about how the state can create a significant number of real jobs for our residents. This film industry focus is like accepting bread crumbs fallen from the table, and the workers are the dogs on the floor, if they are fortunate enough to live in the house. Our state is in trouble financially, and has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country, and she focuses on this niche market for NC?

Woe is the State

it took a three day trip, on the state nickel, for the Governor and her entourage of 23, to learn something which was as clear as the tarmac from which she likes to depart.

This was known long before the 3 day spree.

If somehow, it had escaped her attention, a phone call to the Wilmington Movie advocate, would have enlightened her.

If he was unaware of it, or had not been beating the drum in Raleigh to make the Legislature aware of it, then Wilmington needs to replace him with someone who understands when you receive $120,000 per year to do a job results are expected. Excuses are not.

Can North Carolina survive another three years with this type of visionless leadership.

wilmington film commission

the film commissioner gets $120,000? From who? Taxpayers? Its a private non - organization. Who else kicks in besides the taxpayers? Screen Germs?

I remember when Dino came to town, he left town with a pile of our money in his pockets. Same thing this time, different name, but still the same scam.


so ill informed you are.

The non-profit receives over $100,000 from the city of Wilmington. If that's not taxpayer money, what is it?

How did Dino leave town? His studio went to foreclosure. He lost the big house at Wrightsville Beach.

Whose money do you claim was in his pocket?