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Los Angeles Movies Surge 24.2%, TV Slides 9.2% in 1st Quarter

Movies filmed on location in the Los Angeles area surged 24.2% in the first quarter to 1,588 permitted days while TV activity slid 9.2% to 4,624.

Permitting agency FilmL.A. issued the the report Tuesday, which showed a 1% decline in overall production to 13,265 permitted days from 13,361.

The report touted the benefits of the California Film and Television Tax Credit Program, noting that 25% of feature film production and 22% of TV drama production was generated by state-qualified projects.

FilmL.A. said that feature production outperformed its five-year quarterly average by 39.4%. Films that lensed on location in L.A. during the period included “Entourage: The Movie” (pictured above), “Horrible Bosses 2,” “Los Altos,” “Me, Him, Her,” “Night Crawler” and “The Zone.”

The report was issued two months after state legislation was introduced to expand the tax credit program, which currently provides $100 million annually and is usually capped at 20% of production costs — far smaller than rival programs in Georgia, Louisiana and New York.

“This report underscores the importance of our work to expand the film and television credit program to create jobs and boost our economy,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who has been a strong advocate for an expanded program.

TV activity underperformed its five-year quarterly average by 1.9% as nearly all categories posted declines. TV Dramas were off 7.9% to 1,160 days; reality slid 9.1% to  1,446; sitcoms fell 18.4% to 496; and Web-based plunged 29.7% to 379.

Pilot production edged up 1.5% to 467 days.

TV dramas receiving the incentive included “Franklin & Bash,” “Justified,” “Major Crimes,” “Murder in the First,” “Pretty Little Liars,” “Rizzoli and Isles,” “Switched at Birth” and “Teen Wolf.”

Commercials rose 2.8% to 2,360 days while the combined lower-budget categories including student film projects, music videos and industrial films stayed flat with 4,693 days.

“This quarter’s report hints at what would be possible if California were to truly step up and compete for new film projects and jobs,” noted FilmL.A. President Paul Audley. “California’s Film & Television Tax Credit Program is in its fifth year; just imagine where we could be five years from now if current efforts to expand the state’s incentive program are successful.”

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