Kentucky Lures Producers With Incentives, Locations – and Racing Horses

Need horses? No state is as steeped in equine history as Kentucky, with its celebrated annual Kentucky Derby, which attracts racing fans from around the world. The Bluegrass state also offers a good slice of Middle American settings, including farmland, quaint storefronts, and long, winding rivers. But appealing locations aside, producers also come to the Bluegrass State for its 30-35% refundable tax credit.

Specifically, that incentive provides a refundable tax credit of 35% for resident above-the-line and below-the-line cast and crew. For non-resident cast and crew, the credit drops a smidgen to 30%. But the number remains at 35% for filming in one of the state’s designated enhanced incentive counties.

Commercials are also eligible as long as they spend at least $100,000, and documentaries and Broadway productions are eligible with an expenditure minimum of $20,000. For a Kentucky based company the threshold drops to $10,000.

There’s no project cap, and the compensation cap on above-the-line is set at $1 million. The website of the state’s film office includes an online application form.

Notable projects produced in Kentucky over the years include: “Where Hope Grows” (2014), “The Ides of March” (2011), “Land of Tomorrow” (2011), “Secretariat” (2010), “Elizabethtown” (2005), and “Seabiscuit” (2003).

35% Resident above-the-line and below-the-line refundable tax credit
$1m Compensation cap on above-the-line spending
$250k Minimum spend
30% Non-resident above-the-line and below-the-line refundable tax credit
Information courtesy of EP Financial Solutions, a production incentive consulting and financial services company.

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