Disney’s A Wrinkle In Time, directed by Ava DuVernay and starring Oprah Winfrey, and a new Friday The 13th and Private Benjamins will be sharing in the latest round of tax credits handed out by the California Film Commission. Also, having been awarded tax credits earlier in the year and then falling out the program, the new version of A Star Is Born reapplied, and the Warner Bros pic has been given $7.7 million.
The projects are among the 28 films that got the incentive green light today in the roughly $109 million available this round from the Golden State.
With $18.1 million allocated, A Wrinkle In Time was given the largest incentive since the program more than tripled in 2014. Here is the full list of selected projects and their credit allocation:
Besides the films getting the actual credits, most noteworthy out of today’s announcement is that the $100 million-plus-budgeted Wrinkle represents the first legit tentpole to be awarded tax credits under the expanded program. Adopted from 1963 fantasy novel by Madeleine L’Engle, the Disney pic will shoot mainly outside the LA 30-mile zone. It also will bring $85 million in qualified spending to California, with about 400 cast and crew members employed and $44 million in wages paid to below-the-line workers, says the CRC.
The commission also estimates that about $880 million in-state spending, including $326 million in qualified wages to more than 5,900 crew and cast members, will come from the 28 selected projects. Under the previous tax credits program, films will budgets over $75 million were not eligible for incentives — which meant tentpoles went looking elsewhere than California.
With 91 applications, the eligibility period in this feature cycle ran from June 27-July 8. The California incentives originally had $10 million allocated for Independents and $70 million for studio projects, or what are called Non-Independent Feature Films. However, with allocations sometimes fluid depending on what money was allocated in previous cycles, extra funds were added to raise the stake another $30 million. The breakdown sees 18 non-independent films and 10 independent films getting a piece of the rock, so to speak.
Another TV round is coming in mid-November, but the next film application period won’t be until January 2-13. Potentially successful applicants will know on or around February 13 if they received the lucrative credits.
Including the new A Star Is Born, horror pic Annabelle 2 and Disney’s Overnight On 42nd Street, 13 projects were selected to receive some of the $56.9 million then available in the last film round, which was announced February 10.
Originally capped at $100 million a year and handed out via lottery when the home of Hollywood launched an industry tax credit back in 2009, Gov. Jerry Brown greatly expanded the incentive when he signed the now-five-year, $330 million-a-year tax credit program into law in September 2014. Since then, California has been gaining back the production that was once fleeing to more lucrative states such as New York, Georgia and Louisiana and Canadian provinces; now, with Wrinkle, it has its first big boy.