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Michigan Film Tax Incentive

SAC 366 final Project
by

Bailey Rosser

on 17 April 2009

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Transcript of Michigan Film Tax Incentive

Michigan Film Tax Incentive "Someone once asked me, 'Can the Upper Peninsula be Alaska in winter?' and I said, 'It is Alaska in winter,'" Burnstein said. But as long as the tax incentives build the infrastructure necessary to developing a Hollywood outpost in Michigan, Burnstein still thinks that the state is on the right track. When filming "Gran Torino" in the Detroit area, Clint Eastwood called Michigan "the next film capital of the world." "Michigan could be quite a player in a very viable, exciting business," Lockwood said. "It's not going to replace the auto industry, but I can see the infrastructure growing and creating more jobs." The courthouse was set up as the Ayer Town Hall and Police Department in Ayer, Mass., the town near Boston depicted in the film. Sen. Cassis' position is clear. "During a time of financial crisis for Michigan taxpayers, why are we using Michigan taxpayers' money to subsidize outsiders from Hollywood to the tune of 40% to 42% while our major companies like General Motors are struggling, partly under the tax burdens placed on them in Michigan." "The key is ... it doesn't matter what kind of tax incentive you have, if you don't have the qualified people to make it work then they're not going to want to come back," Constas said. "If you have a movie production and the folks that you hire on don't know what they're doing they're either going to bring people from out of state that do or they're just going to go somewhere else where there's a stable sustainable film community that can sustain projects coming in." "People see your city and state in a film and get an idea of it in their head ... I moved to Houston, just because I thought it was the place to go," he said. "Imagine if we can get people and businesses thinking of Michigan like that ... they just want to come here because of an idea." A positive side effect of the film industry’s presence in Michigan is what is called “film-induced tourism.” ... “This is tourism that follows the filming activity,” Miller said. “Tourism isn’t there to actually watch the filming activity, but to visit the location they saw on the big screen.” Cassis constantly criticizes the tax breaks, threatens to slash them, even complains on radio that we are Motown, not Tinseltown. A refundable, transferable tax credit of up to 40 percent of specific production company costs expended while making movie or media entertainment projects in Michigan is offered, with another 2 percent available if the project is produced in one of over 100 designated core communities, urban districts or traditional centers of commerce situated around the state. You can use Hollywood as a benchmark of what may happen and, yeah, it is wide open as far as what can be developed here locally," Ray said. At the VFW Post 6756 in Center Line, bar manager Rick Poniatowski said members of other posts come with guests to see where Eastwood's character drank and talked with a priest. Many visitors want a picture in the custom-made booth where Eastwood sat in the film.
The factory will be built on 104 acres in Allen Park and include 750,000 square feet of production, post-production and production support services facilities with eight sound stages. http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/gallery?Site=C4&Date=20090311&Category=NEWS&ArtNo=903110804&Ref=PH&Profile=1007&Params=Itemnr=10
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