Czech Republic: Incentives give community a boost

Location: Europe - Czech Republic

The Czech incentive system, finally introduced in 2010 after years of lobbying by the local entertainment industry, has been a decided hit, with some $10 million in rebates last year taken up quickly by local and foreign productions, including latest the “Mission: Impossible” installment, “Ghost Protocol,” which scored $2.2 million, while war tale “Red Tails,” produced by George Lucas, won over $1.2 million; Euro cabler series “Borgia” got $1.6 million.

The incentives are cash rebates — not tax breaks — that cover up to 20% of spend for features, TV, animation and docus and must past the cultural test while fulfilling minimum local spend rules. There’s no cap per project but a yearly capped budget for the rebate works on a first-come first-served basis.

Users have expressed overall satisfaction at the speed of payout, though some point out that the system’s requirements can mean awkward partnering with local shingles. Backers of the rebate also admit that their current legal structure, as an annual parliament budget item, would be better if it were more certain.


Barrandov: Prague’s Barrandov Studios (barrandov.cz) is still the cream of the crop, particularly with a new management team aggressively courting productions from both east and west, while also moving into bigger budget TV series to expand its base. The vast pre-war collection of soundstages and servicers isn’t known for being cutting edge technically, and its newest facility, the Max hall, has experienced electrical bugs but users swear by the crew skills, versatility and design of its older halls.

Options: Gatteo (filmstudiogatteo.cz) is another smaller, newer studio that, like Barrandov, has been moving into producing while offering creative deals.

UPP: Prague’s UPP (upp.cz) has won praises for its post and FX mastery from international productions such as Warner Horizon TV’s “Unnatural History,” Columbia’s “The International” and Scott Free’s upcoming “Andromeda Strain” remake. It’s also used by several U.S. producers who send it regular work.

Avion: Avion (avion.net) has proved a favorite with top Czech filmmakers including Jan Hrebejk for its three floors of modern sound, VFX and post suites.

SoundSquare: SoundSquare (soundsquare.cz), with voice casting and mixing niches, is buzzing with commercial and feature work.

The Czech Republic is coming back from a major lull in production so its crew depth is not what it was at peak production in 2007, many skilled technicians having gone on to greener pastures or been picked off by neighboring countries that are also working hard to grow their resources. Many international shingles still bring in their department heads but hire the rest locally, so the squeeze is still felt when a “Mission: Impossible” franchise moves in for the season. But with many choosing to shoot the country’s picture-perfect locations rather than booking Barrandov, up to three major shoots can be managed at once if they’re efficient.

Czech Film Commission
Ludmila Claussova, ludmila@filmcommission.cz
Michaela Tapsikova,
+420 221 105 254
Mobile: +420 724 329 956
Web: filmcommission.cz
Email: info@filmcommission.cz

Prague prices are not what they once were and last year’s deep discounts on accommodation are drying up fast — but the city still competes well against Western Europe.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon

    Film News Roundup: Stephen King's 'Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon' Movie in the Works

    In today’s film news roundup, a Stephen King horror movie is in the works, “Downton Abbey” is seeing strong sales and a project about Revolutionary War soldier Deborah Sampson is in development. KING ADAPTATION Stephen King’s “The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon” has been set up as a movie at George A. Romero’s Sanibel Films, [...]

  • Moviepass

    MoviePass Confirms Security Issue With Customer Records

    MoviePass, the struggling movie ticket subscription service, has confirmed a security issue may have exposed customers’ records. In a statement, MoviePass said Wednesday that the security lapse was recently discovered and its system was immediately secured. Reports of the data breach first surfaced Tuesday through the Tech Crunch site, which alleged that tens of thousands [...]

  • Matthew Modine

    Matthew Modine Accused of Violating Labor Laws With Campaign Videos

    Matthew Modine has been accused by SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris of violating federal laws in his campaign to unseat Carteris. The production of three campaign videos for Modine by the for-profit New York Film Academy — on whose board Modine sits — has been blasted by Carteris for alleged violations of federal labor law prohibiting [...]

  • Ready or Not Movie

    'Ready or Not,' 'Angel Has Fallen' Enter Box Office Race

    Three more contenders are joining what has lately been a hostile box office arena. Can anyone emerge from August victorious? Fox Searchlight’s “Ready or Not,” a black comedy about a diabolical game of hide-and-seek, will debut in 2,244 North American theaters on Wednesday. The low-budget film is expected to earn upwards of $6.5 million over [...]

  • Rules Don't Apply

    Warren Beatty and Arnon Milchan Settle Suit Over 'Rules Don't Apply' Flop

    Arnon Milchan and Warren Beatty have settled their two-year legal battle over the disastrous release of “Rules Don’t Apply,” Beatty’s period drama about Howard Hughes. Milchan’s attorneys have filed a notice with the court dismissing his suit against Beatty. Terms of the settlement were not disclosed. Milchan’s company, New Regency, sued Beatty and other investors [...]

  • Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro attends a

    Bolsonaro LGBTQI Outburst, Subsidy Freeze, Stirs Outrage

    Ramping up the drive into censorship in Brazil, its Minister of Citizenship, Omar Terra, has suspended a call for applications for governmental TV funding – until new criteria are established for its application. The country’s secretary for culture, Henrique Pires, who reports to Terra, has resigned in protest of the incentive freeze. The suspension, for [...]

  • Adam Brody'Ready or Not' film premiere,

    Adam Brody to Executive Produce, Star in 'The Kid Detective'

    “Ready or Not’s” Adam Brody has signed on to star in “The Kid Detective.” Sophie Nelisse will co-star in the dramedy from writer-director Evan Morgan. Brody will star as a once-celebrated kid detective, now 31, who continues to solve the same trivial mysteries between hangovers and bouts of self-pity until a 16-year-old client (Nelisse) brings [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content