I am a professional filmmaker who, along with thousands of other women and men employed in this industry, want to see this honorable, demanding, well-paid craft continue and flourish in our state. We are one of many families native to the state and lucky to be able to live and work in the film industry in Louisiana.
When the film tax credit program was first set up, there were cases of theft and fraud. The program is run with more oversight and scrutiny to prevent abuses that happened years ago. The 5 percent that gets added to the 30 percent tax credit to the productions for hiring local workers now requires that a crew member have a Louisiana driver’s license, home address and voter registration.
The state has helped to finance some great works in the art of filmmaking, including “Twelve Years a Slave,” “Benjamin Button,” “The Ledge,” an amazing local success, “Beasts of The Southern Wild,” and some things that waddle like a duck.
Why not have Louisiana share in the success of the winners? Investors who finance film get a share of profits. They also write off losses if the film is a dud, such as “Left Behind.” Our state grants the credit whether the production makes money or not. Some projects do very well with a high return on investment. Does not any business venture anticipate making a profit?
The states of Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia are making incentive programs modeled on ours. Atlanta has facilities under construction. Thousands of people with good jobs have moved here or moved home from around the country to be part of it. Is that not the very definition of success?
business owner and gaffer