Saturday, October 22, 2016
  • Wednesday, Apr. 20, 2016
Features, TV, Spots Drive Major Increase In On-Location L.A. Lensing 
Paul Audley, president of FilmL.A.
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On-location filming in Greater Los Angeles increased 11.4 percent between January and March, 2016 to 9,703 shoot days (SD) as compared to the same quarter in 2015, according to an update from FilmL.A.  Double-digit gains in television and feature production, plus a solid increase in commercial production, powered local production levels to record highs.  FilmL.A. is a not-for-profit organization that serves as the official film office of the City of Los Angeles, the County of Los Angeles and 20 other area jurisdictions.  

Local on-location feature production increased 23.7 percent (to 1,145 SD) in the first quarter, thanks to a significant assist from California’s Film & Television Tax Credit Program.  Along with other feature projects, four films retained by the state incentive were in production last quarter, generating 155 SD of filming.  Those projects were The God Particle, Please Stand By, Sentence and Why Him.  

“We predicted we’d see a boost in Feature production in the first quarter thanks to the state tax credit, and we’re glad to see that happening,” noted Paul Audley, president of FilmL.A.  “In addition, as the non-incentivized counts show, Los Angeles remains a popular choice among film, television and commercial producers.”  

Overall television production posted a 19.1 percent increase (to 3,944 SD) in the first quarter, aided by the local presence of state-incentivized shows.  Local TV drama production increased 3.1 percent (to 1091 SD) with 21.9 percent of the category (240 SD) coming from tax credit projects such as Animal Kingdom, Rosewood, Twin Peaks and Westworld, among others.  

Local TV comedy production increased 83.2 percent (to 557 SD) with 14.5 percent (81 SD) coming from tax credit projects.  These projects included Veep, which relocated to Los Angeles from Maryland in 2015, and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.

“Though we’ve seen tremendous growth in the last quarter, Los Angeles County can never take for granted its history and position as the center of the entertainment industry,” said L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe. “Walk or drive anywhere in Los Angeles County these days and chances are you will find yourself on the set of a movie or TV show. From the downtown Los Angeles Arts District to Long Beach, film production is booming and the large and small businesses that benefit from the industry are feeling the benefits, providing hundreds of thousands of jobs, directly and indirectly.”

Local TV pilot production grew by 2.7 percent (to 264 SD) with 14 percent (37 SD) coming from tax credit projects.  Bunker Hill, Nineteen, and Pitch were among the new state-incentivized projects that filmed in Greater L.A.  FilmL.A. Research’s annual survey of U.S. pilot production is slated for publication in June.  

“The very encouraging first quarter numbers from FilmL.A. demonstrate the impact of California’s expanded tax credit program,” said Amy Lemisch, executive director of the California Film Commission. “They illustrate that the Film & Television Tax Credit Program 2.0 is working precisely as intended to attract and retain all types of productions, especially TV projects that create steady long-term jobs for cast and crew.” 

Commercial production increased 6.1 percent (to 1,523 SD), a welcome sign after the category’s flat performance in 2015.  Spot production is the second-largest driver of on-location production in Los Angeles, behind television.  For more than four straight years, commercials have produced more on-location shoot days per year than feature films.    

“The results are in: local production is at a record high, and the state tax credit is working,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Los Angeles is home to the best television and film talent in the world, and the industry is thriving right here at home. The TV shows and movies produced here are hitting screens big and small, creating good, middle-class jobs for hardworking Angelenos, and showcasing the creativity, vibrancy, and imagination of our city. That’s good news today, and for the future.”