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‘Captain Marvel’ Among Big-Budget Films to Receive California Production Tax Credit

Three big-budget films — “Captain Marvel,” “Island Plaza,” and “Midway” — have been selected to receive the California production tax credit for filming in the state.

The trio of movies was unveiled on Monday as part of the latest round of tax credits, which allocates nearly $68 million to eight independent and studio projects. A total of 92 projects applied for tax credits for the third fiscal year of California’s expanded Program 2.0.

Captain Marvel” has been set for a conditional $20.8 million. Brie Larson stars in the superhero tentpole, which hits theaters on March 8, 2019.

Paramount’s “Island Plaza” received the top allocation of $21.5 million and Roland Emmerich’s World War II actioner “Midway” has been given $13.9 million.

Marvel Studios co-president Louis D’Esposito said, “Our headquarters and postproduction facilities are in California, so it’s very exciting to be able to film ‘Captain Marvel’ here in our home state thanks to this California tax credit. As a result, not only will we be able to streamline our production process for this and other films we’re working on concurrently, but we’ll have more time to spend with our families.”

Disney’s “A Wrinkle in Time” received a tax credit last year under new rules that allow productions with budgets of $75 million-plus to be part of the program.

“With the three we’ve added today, a total of six big-budget films have been lured to California thanks to Program 2.0,” said California Film Commission executive director Amy Lemisch. “Such films are a primary target for the tax credit program because they can bring significant jobs and spending to regions across the state.”

Source: California Film Commission

Among the other projects selected for the latest round of tax credits are the indies “Happytime Murders,” directed by Brian Henson and starring Melissa McCarthy, and “Cheney,” with Amy Adams, Christian Bale, and Steve Carell.

The commission said Monday that — based on data provided with each application — the eight film projects are on track to employ more than 2,600 cast and crew, and generate nearly $385 million in qualified spending (defined as wages to below-the-line workers and payments for equipment/vendors). Four of the eight projects plan to shoot at least partially outside the Los Angeles 30-Mile Zone.

“Production companies are rediscovering the diverse locations available across the state,” added Lemisch. “For example, ‘Midway’ plans to film extensively in Alameda County, where the producers can take advantage of the Bay Area’s unique locations, production infrastructure, and skilled crews.”

The 2015-16 fiscal year marked a major expansion for the seven-year-old tax credit program, aimed at halting the erosion of California-based production to states with bigger incentives, such as Georgia and New York. The annual allocation rose from $100 million to $330 million, and applications are ranked on how many jobs they will produce, rather than being selected by lottery.

The program expansion, enacted in 2014 by California lawmakers, covers five years and $1.65 billion in tax credits. The credit is set at 20%, but producers are eligible for an additional 5% “uplift” if they shoot outside the L.A. zone, commit to music scoring or music track recording in the state, or to do visual effects in California.

NBC’s drama “Timeless” recently announced that it was shifting production for its second season from Vancouver to California — the 12th TV series to relocate to California in order to receive the state’s production tax credit. “Timeless” joined three other TV series (“Lucifer,” “Legion,” and “Mistresses”) to relocate from Canada to California under the commission’s Program 2.0.

In February, the commission awarded a $7 million tax credit to the remake of “A Star Is Born,” starring Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga, as part of allocations to 22 projects.

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