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NBC’s ‘Timeless’ Relocating Production to California to Receive Tax Credit

NBC’s drama “Timeless” is shifting production for its second season from Vancouver to California — the 12th TV series to relocate to receive the state’s production tax credit.

“Timeless” has been conditionally approved to receive a $9.9 million production tax credit from the state. The California Film Commission announced the move Thursday and said the series would employ approximately 250 cast, 220 crew and 3000 extras and spend nearly $40 million in wages to below-the-line workers and payments to in-state vendors.

“Timeless” joins three other TV series (“Lucifer,” “Legion” and “Mistresses”) to relocate from Canada to California under the commission’s Program 2.0.

“We’re pleased to welcome ‘Timeless’ to the growing list of TV series that have relocated from other locales, including Canada, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Louisiana, Florida and Texas,” said California Film Commission Executive Director Amy Lemisch. “Program 2.0 is creating long-term jobs while enabling such projects to take advantage of California’s unmatched production resources.”

Ed Lammi, executive vice president of production for Sony Pictures Television, said of the allocation, “Thanks to the tax credit program, we are able to capitalize on California’s vast talent pool of experienced crew and below-the- line support and infrastructure. We know these assets will be a huge benefit for producing the second season of ‘Timeless.'”

The commission’s allocations in the tax credit program are based on a formula that calculates jobs created and economic benefits. Four other conditional tax credit allocations were announced Thursday — $6 million for ABC’s third season of “Code Black”; $8.2 million for CBS’s launch season of “S.W.A.T.”; $9.9 million for Fox’s second season of “This Is Us”; and $7.3 million for HBO’s seventh season of “Veep.”

A total of 23 other series are currently in the program and eligible for tax credits. Series that do not receive pickup orders are withdrawn from the program with their allocations rolled over into the pool of funds for the next allocation period.

“Timeless” is a time travel drama series that premiered on NBC in October. It stars Abigail Spencer, Rufus Carlin, Malcolm Barrett and Matt Lanter as they attempt to stop Goran Visnjic’s character from changing the course of American history through time travel. The series was created by Shawn Ryan and Eric Kripke.

The commission had announced in March that four television shows — “Legion,” “Lucifer,” “The Affair” and “The OA” — were relocating  to California to receive the state’s production tax credit.

The 2015-16 fiscal year marked a major expansion of 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 relocate a TV series from another state, shoot outside the L.A. zone, commit to music scoring or music track recording in the state, or to do visual effects in California.

In November, Dwayne Johnson’s HBO series “Ballers” agreed to move to California from Florida for its third season  “Ballers” was the seventh series to relocate to California under the state’s expanded tax incentive program and joined “Mistresses” (which returned to California from Vancouver); “Scream Queens” and “American Horror Story” (which moved from Louisiana); “Veep” (from Maryland); “Secrets and Lies” (from North Carolina); and ABC’s “American Crime” (from Texas).

Besides “Timeless,” “Veep,” “Code Black,” “S.W.A.T.” and “This Is Us,” the other series currently in the program are “13 Reasons Why,” “The Affair,” “American Horror Story,” “Animal Kingdom,” “Ballers,” “Crazy Ex Girlfriend,” “Famous in Love,” “Heathers,” “Here, Now,” “I’m Dying Up Here,” “Law & Order True Crime,” “Legion,” “Lucifer,” “Mayans MC,” Messiah,” “The OA,” “Rosewood,” “Sharp Objects,” “Shooter,” “Snowfall,” Sweet/Vicious,” an untitled Seth MacFarlane series and “Westworld.”

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