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Will Ferrell’s ‘Daddy’s Home’ Gets California Film Tax Credit (EXCLUSIVE)

Paramount’s Will Ferrell comedy “Daddy’s Home,” New Line’s “Mean Moms” and CBS Films’ D.B. Cooper tale “Skyjack” are on board to receive allocations from the California Film Tax Credit program.

The trio of projects have been moved from the state film commission’s waiting list for allocations along with five other projects: Ahamisa Prods. “Weirdo,” starring Joel Edgerton; Blumhouse Prods. “Invisible Man”; Flattop Prods.’ “Country Girl”; BK Prods.’ movie of the week “Christmas Neverending”; and Out of Sync’s movie “Solo.”

The slots opened up due to a trio of previously selected projects having been removed from the list in recent months: Paramount’s “Death Wish,” Mom From Hell’s “The Meddler” and Close to Home’s movie of the week “Roll with It.”

In July, ABC Family’s cancellation of Amy Sherman-Palladino’s ballet dramedy “Bunheads” led to seven projects receiving allocations from the California Film Tax Credit program. “Bunheads” had been set to receive $5.8 million.

Etan Cohen is directing “Daddy’s Home” with Ferrell and Adam McKay producing for Gary Sanchez Prods., along with Joe Drake and Nathan Kahane for Good Universe. The story follows a mild mannered radio exec, played by Ferrell, whose life gets chaotic when his wife’s ex-husband, played by Vince Vaughn, re-enters the picture.

New Line set up “Mean Moms” in the summer with veteran TV director Beth McCarthy-Miller on board to direct, with Offspring Entertainment producing. New Line president Toby Emmerich recently told Variety that the studio plans to shoot “Mean Moms” next year. The project will bear some resemblance to Paramount’s 2004 comedy “Mean Girls,” since both are adapted from advice books for parents penned by Rosalind Wiseman.

“Skyjack” is based on the Geoffrey Gray novel about D.B. Cooper’s 1971 hijack of a plane, in which he demanded $200,000, jumped out over the Pacific Northwest and was never caught. The book centers on three different people claiming to be Cooper.

California’s existing tax incentive program, which originally passed in 2009, provides credits up to $100 million per year. Critics complain that the amount is far short of demand and precludes California from competing with other states.

California’s credit is smaller than those of rival states with a maximum of 25% of the budget. Producers submitted 380 application in June for the state’s latest round of California’s Film and Television Tax Credit — up 18% from last year’s 327 submissions — and 31 were selected.

It’s not uncommon for waiting list projects to wind up with the credit. A year ago, 28 projects were initially announced but 75 projects ultimately were cleared for the tax credit allocation as some projects dropped out of the program due to scheduling delays or other production-related issues, clearing the way for projects on the waiting list.

The tax credits are not be released to producers until after production is completed and an audit has established that the production funds were spent in California.

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