Production in L.A. Rises 15 Percent
Funny that I should get the chance to write this article, not just because I happen to live in the fair city of Los Angeles (which is currently earning that title, with temps in the 80’s today despite it being the middle of January), but because I was just thinking about this subject the other day. With so many shows being filmed in other cities (and some even in other countries, as popularity for shooting in Canada continues to grow), I wondered if things might get tougher for those making movie and TV in my hometown.
Well as it turns out, I needn’t have worried. According to The Hollywood Reporter, filming on-location in the Los Angeles area actually grew in the final quarter of 2010. Film, TV and commercial production increased nearly 15 percent for all of 2010 over the 2009 figures.
Posting the biggest increase was commercial production, rising by 28.1 percent. Next up came on-location feature production, which gained 8.1 percent, and finally TV production, which was up 11.9 percent.
FilmL. A. issued its annual report, in which they recorded 43,646 permitted production days in 2010, compared to 37,979 in 2009. The company is a non-profit organization, coordinating permits for on-location shoots in the city of Los Angeles, unincorporated parts of Los Angeles County and other local jurisdictions. The organization has attributed the increases in filming to the California tax credit, which the California Film Commission estimates has brought $2 billion in direct spending into California communities since it was launched in mid-2009. In fact, the program was reportedly responsible for 26% of the local film production in LA, in 2010.
TV production posted a fourth quarter gain of 49.9 percent and the two TV categories that saw the biggest increase were sitcoms and reality shows. While both dramas (many of which shifted onto studio lots) and TV pilots were down. While commercial filming had a weak fourth quarter, the annual increase of 28.1 percent was the category’s largest year-over-year increase since tracking began in 1993.
Matt Miller, president and CEO, Assn. of Independent Commercial Producers, said:
“The uptick in numbers clearly reflects the reality that the advertising industry is rebounding nicely from one of its greatest slumps in history.”
Surveying the increase in production over the three categories, Film L. A. president Paul Audley said:
“On balance, the numbers are positive, and I am cautiously optimistic about 2011. Hopefully, with FilmL. A.’s new Film Works’ marketing campaign and the California Film & Television Tax Credit, our state and region will win back entertainment projects and jobs once taken for granted.”