Film and TV productions return to pre-pandemic film shooting levels

Film and television production in Los Angeles returned to pre-pandemic levels in the second quarter of 2021 according to Los Angeles filming organization FilmLA on Thursday, restoring one of the largest and most notable industries in California.

According to FilmLA, 9,791 days of filming and television production were recorded between April and June of this year, surpassing the pre-COVID monthly average of 9,253 filming days and having the highest quarterly total in two years. It also marks an astonishing reversal from the second quarter of 2020 total in Los Angeles, which recorded just 194 filming dates due to the COVID-19 lockdown suspending most productions.

On-location TV show filming in particular has seen a huge jump, with FilmLA recording 4,913 such filming days in Q2 2021, a gigantic leap from pre-COVID numbers, such as Q2 2019. , which had recorded only 3,360 of these shootings. While on-location film shoots are still slightly below pre-pandemic levels of an average of 1,137 shoot dates per quarter, with the second quarter of 2021 having only 824 shoot dates, current trends show that the LA filming will hit this average soon enough, especially with the entrants. tax credits that stimulate more productions.

While some productions have come to a halt again since the outbreak of the COVID delta variant since last month, the number of productions in LA remains high.

“By almost all available metrics, the second quarter was good for filming in Los Angeles,” FilmLA president Paul Audley said in a statement. “With the increase in local cases of COVID-19, it is not clear if this will be sustainable, but the industry‘s commitment to the safety of the community, stakeholders and the team remains firmly in place. . “

With the entertainment industry one of Los Angeles County’s largest employment sectors and one of California’s top ten economic sectors, film and television productions are also a major source of injection. local cash for many places in California, with movies and TV. shoots spend up to $ 250,000 a day in local economies through rentals, food, permit fees, and many other means. The industry has also provided California with one of the few major economic growth areas of 2020 due to the rapid growth of the streaming market, with most of the streaming companies based in California.

Production ramp-up signals return of California film and television industry

Film and television production tax credits have also played a major role in the industry’s comeback. According to FilmLA, 9.3% of all film shoots and almost 20% of TV series shoots in the second quarter of 2021 in the state were backed by tax credits. As a result, productions flocked to California from Florida, Georgia, British Columbia, and places as far away as Australia and the Czech Republic, all of which initially offered tax credits to attract productions to local markets. 2010s.

“These tax credits are really starting to show their usefulness now,” filming accountant Patrice Weiss told The Globe on Friday. “California has long pulled out of the industry because of higher taxes, so they added these credits and, look at it, it’s coming back.

“Match that with the returning productions from COVID, and we’re seeing the industry not only revive, but grow again. There’s one more shoot of Spielberg in LA. Franchises like American Crime Story and Star Trek: Picard find homes here. Some shoots, on which states like Georgia relied, come back here.

“There are always concerns, like this delta variant which is closing some productions again, but overall the mood is that it is coming back. And with more tax credits provided by the state right now, they are looking to claw back more. Georgia has taken a lot of productions including Marvel movies, with British Columbia and Toronto still receiving lots of US productions doubling down. California wants them back because they really help local economies and the industry itself which is part of the state’s history.

With some productions being halted again due to the COVID-19 delta variant, it is currently unclear whether the rebound will continue into the third quarter. However, more productions receiving tax credits could reverse this and keep the industry above pre-pandemic levels.

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