Posted: Sun., Jun. 15, 2003, 8:06pm PT
Quebec cuts local film & TV funding
Some skeins no longer eligible for tax credits
By BRENDAN KELLY
MONTREAL -- The Quebec government is cutting tax credits for homegrown films and TV shows produced in the province, reducing the number of TV shows eligible for funding and lowering the maximum amount of cash any one film can access.
The measures were unveiled in the budget of the new provincial government announced last week in Quebec City.
The tax credit for feature films is being reduced from 45% to 39% of labor costs, or roughly from 16.8% to 14.6% of a film's overall budget.
For TV production, the tax credit is dipping from 33.3% to 29% of labor costs.
In addition, the government decreed that many types of TV shows will no longer be eligible for tax credits, including all reality shows, making-of-film shows, quizzes and any shows focusing on construction, renovation, gardening or cooking.
Also, the maximum provincial tax credit for a film is now C$2.2 million ($1.6 million), down from $1.8 million. This item will hit the producers making big-budget pics in the province.
The Quebec government did not lower the tax credit for foreign film companies shooting in Quebec, and that may be creating a political hot-potato, says Montreal film lawyer Sam Coppola. "Politically speaking, you're saying, 'I'm not cutting foreign companies, but I am cutting the local guys," he said.