The Los Angeles City Council has honored 18 Emmy-nominated television shows — including “Veep,” which is set in Washington, D.C. — for shooting in California.
In ceremonies on Wednesday at the 1600 Vine property, “Scandal” star Joe Morton and former city councilman Tom Labonge presented the 2016 Made in Hollywood Honors for Television. “For actors, shooting in Hollywood is like going to New York to be on Broadway,” Morton noted.
The event took place amid rising production activity in California in the wake of last year’s enactment of the state’s expanded Film & Television Tax Credit Program, in which the total amount of the credit was raised to $330 million annually from $100 million.
“The entertainment industry thrives here,” said council member Mitch O’Farrell. “Its professionals live and raise their families here. We also have the infrastructure, from the caterers, prop and costume houses, to talent, crew, to our vast studio system and ideal outside film location sites. Hollywood is the place to be.”
The expansion of the credit program has been framed as a means of maintaining middle-class jobs in California by putting the brakes on years of runaway production. It offers tax credits of up to 25% of the production budget with selections by the California Film Commission based on jobs created to determine which films receive the credit.
The program also offers the 25% credit for TV series which re-locate to California, as “Veep” did last year from Maryland for its fifth season. Five other series have also relocated to the Golden State, thanks to the incentive: “American Horror Story” (Season 6) and “Scream Queens” (Season 2), both from Louisiana; “Mistresses” (Season 4) from Vancouver; “Secrets and Lies” (Season 2) from North Carolina; and “American Crime” (Season 3) from Texas.
“It’s been amazing to move the show to LA from Maryland,” said Alex Gregory, “Veep” co-executive producer. “All of the writing staff and all of the principal actors except Anna Chlumsky are based in Los Angeles. Most of the show is interiors so it’s not a problem that we’re not close to Washington, D.C., and we spent a week in Washington, D.C., to get the beauty shots we needed.”
Gregory said that the sixth season of “Veep” will move into production in Los Angeles in about a month. “We’re very grateful for the incentive,” he added.
Steve Dayan, who’s the chair of the commission and secretary-treasurer of Teamsters Local 399, said the incentive has meant that the 5,000 members in the local are at full employment for the first time in a decade. “This is a renaissance period for our industry,” he added.
Justin Falvey, an executive producer on HBO’s Lyndon Johnson biopic “All the Way,” told Variety that the telepic was shot in Los Angeles — even though the story is set in Texas and Washington, D.C. — due to the wishes of director Jay Roach.
“We applied for a tax credit but we didn’t get one,” he said. “We were glad to shoot here. There’s nothing better than shooting in L.A.”
Jane Austin, president of the Los Angeles SAG-AFTRA local and a stuntwoman, said that her members have been seeing more work in California over the past year.
Film commissioner Amy Lemisch told the gathering about 100, “Our depth of creative talent and skilled crews are the best in the world.”
A FilmLA study released in June showed that California’s status as the top production center in the world remained intact last year as the state was the leading site for major feature films, with 19 of the top 109 projects.
The 2016 Emmy-nominated television programs honored Wednesdayare below.
The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story (Fox/FX Productions)
Variety Sketch Series
Key and Peele (Cindylou & Monkeypaw Prods/Comedy Central)
Blackish (Wilmore Films/Principato-Young Prods/ABC Studios/ABC)
Modern Family (Levitan-Lloyd/Fox Television/ABC)
Silicon Valley (3 Arts Entertainment/Altschuler Krinsky Works/Judgemental Films/HB)
Veep (Dundee Productions/HBO)
Variety Talk Series
Jimmy Kimmel Live (Jackhole Industries/ABC)
The Late Late Show with James Corden (Fulwell 73/CBS)
Real Time with Bill Maher (Bill Maher Production/HB)
Dog with a Blog (CBS Television Distribution/Disney Channel)
Girl Meets World (It’s a Laugh Productions/Disney Channel)
School of Rock (Armogida Brothers Productions/Nickelodeon Network)
All the Way (HBO Films/HBO)
The Simpsons (Gracie Films/20th Century Fox Television)
Bob’s Burgers (Bento Box Entertainment/ Fox Network)
Short Form Nonfiction or Reality Series
Jay Leno’s Garage (Big Dog Productions/CNBC)
National Endowment for the Arts: United States of Arts (Solaris Media Group/National Endowment for the Arts)