The credit can help producers defray some of the costs of producing their films.
Annapolis, Md (KM) Attention budding film makers! You could be eligible for a state tax credit toward some of the costs of producing your small film. “Governor Hogan, in May, signed Senate Bill 1154, which basically gives us a 10% crave out of our annual appropriation specifically targeting small Maryland-based production companies or small Maryland-based films,” says Jack Gerbes, the Director of the Maryland Film Office which is administering this program.
He says $800,000 has been set aside for this tax credit program.
In order to be eligible for the tax credit, Gerbes says small film producers must prove their are a viable entity; have all of their financing in place; have a script and production schedule, and be ready to start production. “And the production entity has to be established in Maryland for at least a year. It’s more targeted toward the local Maryland film maker,” he says.
All the information about the tax credit program is available on the Maryland Film Office’s website, www.marylandfilm.org.
Gerbes says this tax credit will help the film maker offset some of the costs of incurred by the production of their small films. “Once that production is finished, and they supply us with all the necessary closing financial documentation, then we will issue that company a tax credit against their corporate income tax,” he says.
There is no deadline to apply. Instead, the credit will remain in affect until the funding for fiscal year 2019 runs out. The funds will be replenished in fiscal year 2020 which begins on July 1st, 2019, Gerbes says.
The production of movies and TV shows has had a $1-billion impact on the state’s economy since 2011. “Not only does a production create jobs–for instance, ‘House of Cards’ each season, they hired on an average 1700 Maryland residents–but it also provides revenue for Maryland businesses, especially smaller mom and pop businesses,” he says.
But, Gerbes points out, this tax credit program is more than just benefiting the state’s economy. “The important production brings in huge dollars to the State of Maryland. But we also want to nurture the indigenous film maker, the local small film maker,” he says.
Some producers whose films were made in Maryland include John Waters, Barry Levenson and Ed Sanchez, who helped put together “The Blair Witch Project.”
By Kevin McManus