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NABET 700-M UNIFOR represents over 1000 Film, Television and New Media Technicians in the province of Ontario.

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Toronto, ON
M5C 1M3
Tel: 416-536-4827
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News

February 16, 2017

February Update from FilmOntario, February 13, 2017

New Tax Credit Administration Fee Structure
The OMDC has announced a new Administration Fee structure for all Tax Credits, including the film and television credits, as the Agency moves toward a cost-recovery model for Tax Credit Administration. The new fee for all credits will now be 0.15% of eligible expenditures, with a minimum fee of $500 (OFTTC and OCASE), $5,000 (OPSTC) or $1,000 (OIDMTC). The maximum fee for all credits is now $10,000.

FilmOntario continues to be concerned about the long processing times currently being experienced by Tax Credit applicants. This is an issue we will continue to address through our work with the Minister’s Advisory Panel on Film and Television, and through regular meetings with the OMDC.

Please contact me if you have any concerns about this increase. If you have general questions about tax credits, please contact the OMDC directly.

Welcome New Member!
FilmOntario would like to welcome Rob Heydon Productions Inc. as a new member. Thank you for your support of the Ontario industry and your company’s contribution to FilmOntario’s ongoing activities.

And remember – it’s always better to do business with a fellow FilmOntario member!

Now Playing: Kiss and Cry
Carley Allison, a promising 17-year-old figure skater and singer, made national headlines in 2013, when she was undergoing treatment for her extremely rare, 1 in 3.5 billion form of cancer. Kiss & Cry, directed by filmmaker PRO member Sean Cisterna (Full Out), is a romantic drama based on the true story of Carley, who finds love just as she is diagnosed. The movie premiered on February 4, World Cancer Day, in Toronto, Calgary and Edmonton and is currently playing at the Carlton Cinema in Toronto.

The trailer can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ma99gh6q9s8.

Coming Soon: Member Survey
As you will recall from the AGM, in 2017 we are planning to survey members on employment and other economic indicators, in order to support FilmOntario’s ongoing work in improving industry data that is being done in conjunction with the Minister’s Advisory Panel on Film and Television. Watch your inboxes for this important survey – and please fill it out when you get it! We can’t do this work without your help.

WEEKLY UPDATE from Kelly Graham-Scherer, Los Angeles Representative - February 10, 2017

Tis the season when companies release their fourth quarter earnings and Time Warner investors got good news this week. As reported in the Los Angeles Times below, Warner Brothers studios helped the conglomerate beat expectations, thanks to hits like HBO's Westworld and Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them. The article also notes that Warner Bros. is producing 75 series for the 2016-17 television season, including 36 for the broadcast networks, the most of any studio.
http://www.latimes.com/business/hollywood/la-fi-ct-time-warner-earnings-20170208-story.html

Paramount Studios is not enjoying the same success, but its new CEO last week talked publicly about his plans to reinvigorate the company. As detailed in the Times below, Bob Bakish aims to dramatically alter how Paramount Pictures operates and to reorganize Viacom’s television networks around six flagship brands: Comedy Central, BET, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., MTV and a newly minted Paramount channel.
http://www.latimes.com/business/hollywood/la-fi-ct-viacom-bakish-paramount-20170203-story.html

Actors' residual checks are about to become a thing of the past. As reported in Deadline Hollywood below, SAG-AFTRA announced this week it will begin offering its members electronic delivery of residuals directly to their personal bank accounts, presumably saving thousands of trees, as the union’s residuals department currently processes more than 1.5 million paper checks each year.
http://deadline.com/2017/02/sag-aftra-residuals-checks-direct-deposit-program-1201905528/

There is lots of talk about how the digital world has disrupted traditional content distribution models, but rarely have I seen anyone attempt an analysis of how digitally-sourced Big Data has the capacity to change how content is produced. Vanity Fair did just that recently in the fascinating and ominously titled article : "Why Hollywood As We Know It Is Already Over." Thanks to Ontario producer Ray Sager for bringing it to my attention.
http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/01/why-hollywood-as-we-know-it-is-already-over

Finally this week, the Ontario Media Development Corporation is making some changes to its tax credit administration fees. Playback has all the details below. http://playbackonline.ca/2017/02/07/omdc-to-update-tax-credit-admin-fees/#ixzz4Y1XNGC9A


WEEKLY UPDATE from Kelly Graham-Scherer, Los Angeles Representative - February 3, 2017

These are interesting times in American politics and Hollywood is not immune. The Hollywood Reporter this week took a look at how President Trump's travel ban will affect the screen-based industries, which have long relied on a global talent pool. The story predicts Canadian productions could emulate tech companies which are reportedly lobbying to assist visa-seekers who can't get into the U.S. in an effort to poach talent.
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/trumps-immigration-ban-wreaks-havoc-hollywood-foreign-stars-casting-impacted-970806

The Los Angeles Times this week featured a story on industry growth in the city of Santa Clarita, a bedroom community about 50 kilometres north of Los Angeles. As reported below, the explosive growth in filming in the region is attributed to the California tax credits instituted in 2015, and the fact that L.A. locations that used to "represent middle-class America really aren’t because L.A. is so expensive,” while the Santa Clarita area “is made up of teachers, firefighters, law enforcement personnel … who commute into L.A.”
http://www.latimes.com/business/hollywood/la-fi-ct-netflix-santa-clarita-filming-20170131-story.html

Just in case you still aren't fully invested in the idea that production tax credits are the primary driver of the film and television production business; Movie Maker magazine this week published a comprehensive examination of how tax incentives impact the economies of the jurisdictions that offer them.
http://www.moviemaker.com/archives/winter-2017/swing-states-tax-incentives/

Whether it's releasing stats about employment numbers or awards nominations for locally-shot films, New York is a state that has aggressively publicized the impact of its generous tax incentives. Case in point is an article in Crain's New York this week, citing stats from New York's Post Alliance, crediting postproduction work for film and TV for generating $128 million a year in state tax revenue and the creation of 23,310 jobs. https://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20170201/ENTERTAINMENT/170209990/postproduction-film-and-tv-work-generates-128-million-in-tax-revenue

The 105-day SAG-AFTRA strike against video game companies got new life this week when 400 actors and supporters turned out for a rally in Hollywood. As detailed in Deadline below, residuals remain the key issue as the guild wants to give game companies the option of paying an upfront bonus to performers or paying backend residuals on successful games. The companies, however, steadfastly have refused to include any residuals formula in the collective bargaining agreement.
http://deadline.com/2017/02/sag-aftra-video-game-strike-rally-david-white-gabrielle-carteris-1201901161/

The woes of a major film studio made the front page of the L.A. Times business section this week. As detailed below, Sony has announced a nearly $1-billion write-down on its movie business - an extraordinary step for a major Hollywood player that highlights the deepening financial challenges facing the nearly century-old Culver City studio
http://www.latimes.com/business/hollywood/la-fi-ct-sony-billion-write-down-20170130-story.html

The Sundance Film Festival wrapped up this week and an Ontario producer brought to my attention this extraordinary article from IndieWire which highlights the increasing role Amazon and Netflix are having on the independent film business. The piece below also tracks sales at Sundance this year and serves as a bracing reminder that the film business is more about the business than it is about the film.
http://www.indiewire.com/2017/01/sundance-2017-independents-acquisitions-sales-1201774067/

Finally this week, Toronto Mayor John Tory brought his considerable charm to bear last week on a mission to Los Angeles film, television and digital clients. As detailed in a release from the City of Toronto, the mission consisted of five hosted events with influential decision makers from across the Los Angeles screen production spectrum as well as meetings with companies such as Annapurna Pictures, CBS All Access and Netflix.
http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=af71df79b2df6410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD&nrkey=4F41E12D81930AC7852580B300763B58

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