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January 24, 2014

January 24th News Report from your Los Angeles Representative

TORONTO ONTARIO film office - A partnership of the Ontario Media Development Corporation, City of Toronto and FilmOntario.
WEEKLY UPDATE January 24, 2014
from Kelly Graham-Scherer, Los Angeles Representative - torontoontariofilm@gmail.com

Happy Friday everyone,

It was great to see so many Ontario stakeholders here in L.A. for our event earlier this week. As the Canadian dollar continues to fall and L.A. clients become aware of how the exchange rate will favorably affect their budget, I expect the next few months will bring increasing interest in our jurisdiction. Many visitors to our event this week were there to discuss specific projects and I am hearing from many of you that you are extremely pleased with prospects for the next two quarters.

Before I present this week's media selections I'd like to extend a hearty congratulations to Ontario native Donald Mowat who has been nominated for a Make-up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild award for Best Contemporary Makeup for his work in Prisoners. Congratulations Donald!

Los Angeles is still very much in the thrall of awards season and as such nominated films are being scrutinized from every possible angle. The L.A. Times this week reported that the nine films nominated for best picture Oscars have more in common than just the accolades they've earned: every one of them also scores high marks when it comes to garnering subsidies. 
http://www.latimes.com/opinion/opinion-la/la-ol-oscar-nominees-tax-breaks-20140120,0,7727485.story#axzz2rGDyhBo4

Influential Forbes magazine also got in on the act with an article about the top films which collected tax rebates and declaring an "irony alert" while noting that the Wolf of Wall Street received a 30 per cent tax break.
http://www.forbes.com/sites/beltway/2014/01/21/oscar-nominees-cash-in-on-state-tax-subsidies/

In other tax credit news, North Carolina this week has conflicting reports on its hands as it studies whether to recommend the state film incentive program be extended when the legislative session begins this May. As reported in the Star News below, on one hand a recently released partial film study commissioned by the Wilmington Regional Film Commission showed that the industry is a big win, but an internal department report paints a different picture and hints at a need to reform the tax credit program.
http://www.starnewsonline.com/article/20140120/ARTICLES/140129982/1177?Title=Reports-conflict-on-impact-of-tax-incentive-for-film-industry#gsc.tab=0

Variety reports this week that Sony Imageworks staff in British Columbia and Los Angeles are bracing for layoffs as the company transfers a portion of the staff from its Los Angeles HQ to its studio in Vancouver. As detailed below, it is reported that Sony staffers expect wider layoffs to come as its visual effects and animation studio has come under the microscope as the company seeks to trim costs by $250 million.
http://variety.com/2014/film/news/sony-imageworks-shifts-jobs-from-l-a-to-vancouver-layoffs-feared-1201066205/

And finally this week, it appears that the overall film and television business in Vancouver is on the rebound, As reported in the Burnaby News Leader below, after a poor 2013 things are looking up for British Columbia.
http://www.burnabynewsleader.com/news/241323551.html

Please feel free to distribute this e-mail widely and to get in touch with me with comments or links for inclusion.

I look forward to seeing many of you next week at the fourth annual Toronto / Ontario on Location in LA Day, which is once again shaping up to be a great event.

Warmest regards,

Kelly Graham-Scherer
Los Angeles Representative
Toronto/ Ontario Film Office 

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