You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Tax break could come to a halt

Incentive helped Dutch film industry

AMSTERDAM — Leading parties in the Dutch parliament are backing an extension of the highly publicized Dutch tax incentive scheme which is set to expire at the end of this year.

Dutch filmmakers had feared that the tax break, credited with boosting the number of Dutch films as well as their performance at the box office, might be in its death throes. Since its launch in 1999, the scheme has run into hurdle after hurdle, ranging from government foot dragging to opposition by tax inspectors to regulatory stumbling blocks.

In recent weeks, warnings the government would cut its cultural budgets renewed fears the tax scheme would not be extended.

While the newly formed cabinet is less than enthusiastic, members of parliament had privately given some assurances that they would support extending the measure.

In the May 26 debate, however, leaders from three major coalition parties went on record for the first time, saying their members would support the extension. They joined two other parties that had also said they would throw their weight behind it.

“It’s a long way from getting an extension and there are quite a few steps to be taken, but it does offer some hope,” notes Gamila Ylstra, managing director of Fine, a government-initiated go-between for producers and investors seeking venture capital for film projects.

Ylstra pointed out that the government and parliament must come to a compromise on the issue by early September when the budget must be agreed.

The tax scheme, which allows private individuals a tax break if they invest in a film, costs the government e23 million ($26.6 million) annually.

Despite being plagued by bureaucratic delays and government shilly-shallying since it launched, in its heyday in late 1999 and 2000, the tax break scheme backed 45 productions including Jeroen Krabbe’s “Discovery of Heaven,” Johan Nijenhuis’ “Full Moon Party” and Pieter Kramer’s “Yes Sister, No Sister.”

By 2002, more footdragging had once again slowed production down to a trickle.

Filmers in the meantime are warning if the tax break expires, it could set Holland’s film industry back years.

“It will certainly be extremely difficult to make crowd pleasers in the next few years,” says producer-director Nijenhuis, whose films have helped locally made films take 10% of the box office in Holland in 2001 and 2002

More Film

  • Voltage Pictures to Produce Airborne Thriller

    Voltage Pictures to Produce Airborne Thriller 'Blackwing' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Voltage Pictures will produce and fully finance screenwriter David Loughery’s latest thriller “Blackwing,” Variety has learned exclusively. The company will introduce “Blackwing” to buyers at the upcoming European Film Market at the Berlin Film Festival, which opens Feb. 7. Nicolas Chartier and Dominic Rustam are producing, and Jonathan Deckter is executive producing for Voltage Pictures. [...]

  • ‘Metro Exodus’ Opens Up Post-Apocalyptic Russia

    ‘Metro Exodus’ Author On Film, Possible TV Series, Expansive New Game

    Since the launch of the post-apocalyptic survival first-person shooter “Metro 2033” in 2010, the series has kept its action confined to the tunnels running underneath Russia. “Metro Exodus,” due out next month, takes the gameplay to the surface for the first time, going above ground with sprawling levels against a changing backdrop of weather conditions [...]

  • Berlin Film 'The Ground Beneath My

    Berlin Competition Film 'The Ground Beneath My Feet' Sold to Germany's Salzgeber (EXCLUSIVE)

    Salzgeber has acquired the German rights for Berlin Film Festival competition title “The Ground Beneath My Feet” from sales agent Picture Tree International. Variety has been given exclusive access to the film’s trailer. Salzgeber will release the film, directed by Marie Kreutzer, mid-May. Picture Tree describes the movie as a “contemporary female-led drama touching on [...]

  • Donald Glover'Atlanta' TV show premiere, Arrivals,

    Childish Gambino Surprises Beverly Hills Crowd With Reimagined 'Redbone'

    Donald Glover made an unexpected appearance at Film Independent’s “An Evening With…” series tonight (Jan. 15), held at the Wallis Annenberg Center for Performing Arts in Beverly Hills and presented by the HFPA. Joining “Black Panther” composer and Childish Gambino collaborator Ludwig Göransson, who was the subject of a Q&A conducted by “The Treatment” host Elvis [...]


    Film News Roundup: Glenn Close Selected for Oscar Wilde Award

    In today’s film news roundup, Glenn Close gets an honor, AFI names its Directing Workshop for Women participants and Teri Polo gets cast in a Christmas drama. CLOSE HONOR Glenn Close will be honored on Feb. 21 by the US-Ireland Alliance at the 14th Annual Oscar Wilde Awards, held at J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot in [...]

  • Jason Reitman Ghostbusters

    Jason Reitman to Direct Secret 'Ghostbusters' Movie

    Sony Pictures is getting the wheels in motion for the next installment in the “Ghostbusters” franchise, and it knows who it’s going to call to direct: Jason Reitman. Sources tell Variety that Reitman, whose father, Ivan, directed the first two “Ghostbusters” movies, will direct the latest pic in the famous franchise. Reitman has also co-written a [...]

  • L.A. Teachers' Strike: Hollywood Studios, Unions

    Hollywood Studios, Unions Support Parents and Educators as L.A. Teachers' Strike Rages

    Hollywood unions and entertainment companies have stepped up to support the 31,000 Los Angeles teachers in the second day of a massive strike that’s affected nearly half a million students. More than 50 SAG-AFTRA members picketed at a Tuesday afternoon rally in the driving rain next to the Hollywood & Highland Center with secretary-treasurer Jane [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content