×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Belgium, Luxembourg & Netherlands: Incentives are burgeoning

Location: Europe 2012

While the Netherlands and Luxembourg remain modest in their efforts to attract foreign film shoots, incentives are burgeoning in Belgium. Practical and financial aid for visiting crews continues to develop, complementing coin available through the country’s tax shelter.

The tax shelter channels coin into film productions with European identity and a local co-producer. A proportion of the money must be spent on local costs, which can include Belgian cast, crew and other aspects of shooting, although in practice the finance structure suits post-production best. Abundance of coin has done wonders for the country’s animators and post houses.

Offices across the country will help find locations, fix permits and organize shoots. Three regional offices in Wallonia collaborate through Wallonie-Tournages, while in Flanders five city film offices — Antwerp, Bruges, Ghent, Ostend and Mechelen — collaborate through Location Flanders. The capital, Brussels, is officially bilingual and has its own independent film office.

Productions shooting in Wallonia can apply for funds from government agency Wallimage. Bids can rise to €400,000 ($530,577), given as a combination of loan (up to 40% of the total) and equity. Productions must commit to spend at least $331,468 in the region as well as meeting a number of other requirements. Most foreign productions engage a local producing partner.

A similar scheme exists for productions split between Brussels and Wallonia, where the maximum bid is $265,174 and at least $132,579 must be invested in each region.

Wallonia puts $4.64 million a year into these schemes, Brussels $1.33 million. Local and French co-productions dominate, but films from further afield such as Ken Loach’s “Looking for Eric” and Ari Folman’s forthcoming animation “The Congress” have also cashed in.

Not to be left out, Flanders this year proposed its own $6.63 million incentive scheme for visiting productions, intended to work closely with Location Flanders. Called Screen Flanders, it will provide foreign producers with an advance of up to $530,577, repayable from net revenue. An equivalent amount or more must be invested locally.

Fiction, documentary and animated features can all apply, but there will be a minimum production budget to ensure only bigger fish are caught. If approved by regulators, Screen Flanders could open for business in the second half of 2012.

In the Netherlands, there are no national incentives to shoot and no coordinated location support, although the cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam have dedicated film offices to smooth the way with locations, permits and services. Neither offers financial incentives, with Rotterdam recently deciding to close a system of interest-free loans under city austerity measures.

Luxembourg does little to attract foreign productions, but those willing to take on a local partner can tap tax incentives via the Film Fund Luxembourg. These offset a proportion of production costs incurred in the Grand Duchy, or indeed anywhere in the European Union.

Return to Location: Europe 2012 >>

Popular on Variety

More Scene

  • Laverne Cox Charlie's Angels

    How Laverne Cox Landed a Cameo in Elizabeth Banks' 'Charlie’s Angels'

    Laverne Cox officially earned her wings, scoring a role in Sony’s “Charlie’s Angels.” But she revealed her cameo almost didn’t happen. When the Emmy-nominee heard that Elizabeth Banks was directing the film, the longtime fan of the franchise (and of Banks herself) reached out about being part of the project. Cox had previously worked with [...]

  • Lena Waithe'The Inheritance' Broadway play opening,

    Lena Waithe, Anderson Cooper Attend Broadway Opening of 'The Inheritance'

    “The Inheritance” pulls viewers in many directions — toward pain and hope, trauma and healing. It’s what brought stars like Andy Cohen, Anderson Cooper, Sarah Jessica Parker, Matthew Broderick and Lena Waithe to Broadway on Sunday — a chance to heal, to remember and grieve. Also in attendance for the premiere at the Barrymore Theater [...]

  • Cybill ShepherdTrevorLIVE, Show, The Beverly Hilton,

    'The L Word' Co-Stars Cybill Shepherd and Jane Lynch Reunite at TrevorLive

    Fans of Showtime’s “The L Word” will be happy to hear that Cybill Shepherd eagerly reprised her on-screen romance with former co-star Jane Lynch on Sunday night at the TrevorLive Gala at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles. While accepting the champion Award, Shepherd kissed Lynch not one, but twice. The “Moonlighting” star was recognized [...]

  • Rami Malek, Robert Pattinson and John

    Robert Pattinson Praises Fans for Raising Funds for Go Campaign: ‘It’s So Sweet’

    Robert Pattinson is giving back, but he’s even more impressed that his friends and fans are joining him in the fight. “It’s amazing,” Pattinson told Variety on the black carpet outside Neuehouse in Hollywood at the Go Campaign’s annual gala. “And they’ve done it every year. It’s kind of — it’s so sweet and I [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content