“It is our pleasure to return to North Carolina for our third season of ‘Under the Dome,’ ” said Kevin Berg, exec VP of production for CBS Television Studios. “The film community in the state, and particularly in the greater Wilmington area, is simply outstanding.”
The show will return EUE/Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, where it has been based since its inception in 2013.
In August, North Carolina legislators ditched the state’s longtime film and TV incentives program amid a conservative push to cut back on such government support.
North Carolina’s current 25% incentive program — which is covering about $300 million in production expenditures this year — and is being replaced next year with a grant program for movie and TV productions with a total annual cap of $10 million in grants, with a cap of $5 million for an individual TV series.
CBS received a $8.3 million rebate for $33 million in expenditures for the first season of “Under the Dome” in 2013. The rebate for the second season is still being processed but will probably be slightly higher, according to Johnny Griffin, director of the Wilmington Regional Film Commission.
Supporters of the current incentive program contend that North Carolina will lose production to other states with more robust incentives — such as Georgia and Lousiana. Griffin said supporters plan to lobby the legislature when it reconvenes in January for more funding.
Bill Vassar, exec VP at EUE/Screen Gems Studios, said, “Retaining the production of ‘Under the Dome’ provides economic stability for hundreds of North Carolina film workers and several hundred of Wilmington’s small businesses. Renewal of this production was critical to our local area.”
“Under the Dome” is based on the Stephen King novel of the same name. King and Steven Spielberg exec produce with showrunner Neal Baer, Amblin’s Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank and former DreamWorks CEO Stacey Snider.