“It’s happening, it’s real.” Filmmaker Greg Paul said of the Arizona Motion Picture Program, passed by state legislators in July. Paul, an actor, director, and Resource Liaison for the Arizona Film Office, will lead the PFF forum. “Legislators have agreed in principle on the tax credit. It’s based on state initiatives in places like Massachusetts and Georgia. There’s still work to be done – tailoring the program to Arizona, getting the film office ready – but it’s going to be law as of January 2023.”
The Arizona Motion Picture Program is a tiered-incentive program, offering a 15% tax credit to qualifying filmmakers who spend $10 million shooting movies or television shows in Arizona. Filmmakers spending $10 – $35 million in the state will receive a 17.5% tax credit, and those spending more than $35 million will enjoy a 20% tax credit. The state will also offer 2.5% tax reduction on labor costs to production companies that hire Arizona workers. Paul says, with proper implementation and promotion, the program can open Arizona back up to a sizable influx of Hollywood money.
“We’re talking hundreds of millions of dollars,” he explained. Other Western states, like Wyoming (Yellowstone) and New Mexico (Breaking Bad, Better Call Saul), have used similar incentives to lure production companies to their states and enriched their economies. “Arizona has had a great filmmaking history – with the Grand Canyon and all its natural wonders – but it fell out of favor with politicians.” See more.