Alberta is hoping to invest more in the province’s film and television industry as officials commit additional funds to further expand the growing sector.
According to the government, global spending in the film and television industry is set to be about $113 billion by 2022, with at least half of that spending coming from North America.
The most recent budget for 2022-2023 includes an increase of funds of up to 40 per cent through the Film and Television Tax Credit program for a total of up to $70 million in 2022-2023 and $225 million through 2024-2025, according to a Government of Alberta release.
“Alberta’s film industry has doubled in production value and is becoming one of the fastest growing industries in our province. From Ghostbusters to Fraggle Rock and from The Last of Us to Fargo, Alberta is proving that we are a destination of choice for production companies. Our increased investment in the Film and Television Tax Credit means more action for our province in the years to come,” said Doug Schweitzer, the Minister of Jobs, Economy and Innovation.
The overall goal is for Alberta to be competitive with other provinces and on par with attracting media productions and growing the film sector by $1.5 billion over the next decade.
The Film and Television Tax Credit was launched in January 2020 and offers a refundable Alberta tax credit certificate on eligible Alberta production and labour costs to any companies that produce films and television series in the province, says the release.
For example, since the program has been initiated, film productions have been pre-approved for a combined total of $144 million in tax credit certificates.
“The Government of Alberta’s investment into the film and television industry has been a total game-changer, generating hundreds of millions of dollars in economic growth in the sector. Graduates of institutions like Bow Valley College can pursue their careers right here in Alberta rather than moving to other previously more competitive provinces,” said Damian Petti, president of I.A.T.S.E Local 212.
That has brought 62 productions to Alberta including 20 feature films and 41 television series, at least half of which are returning. Thoose productions are expected to spend $621 million for the province and generate at least 12,500 jobs.