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Alberta boosts film and TV tax credit, eliminates per-production cap

Click to play video: 'Alberta gets rid of per-project tax credit cap to attract big-budget productions' Alberta gets rid of per-project tax credit cap to attract big-budget productions
WATCH: More made-in-Alberta movie productions are expected to happen going forward. On Friday it was revealed the Alberta government is getting rid of a significant hurdle for blockbuster film investors. Jill Croteau reports – Mar 26, 2021

The Alberta government announced Friday it was boosting the province’s film and television tax credit by $19.5 million, to $50 million, and eliminating the per-production cap on productions.

Minister of Jobs, Economy and Innovation Dough Schweitzer said the government has been meeting with stakeholders across the province, as well as large corporations like Universal, Disney and MGM, to find ways to attract more business to Alberta.

Read more: Cameras soon set to roll on Alberta film sets after productions paused

“The one resounding bit of feedback we received is that we had to remove the per-production cap on productions,” he said.

“The per-production cap has been eliminated in Alberta. And we want to make sure we send a clear signal that we want your productions here in the province of Alberta. We want your creative industries here to develop out and create job opportunities.”

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The per-production cap had previously been $10 million.

A production crew is seen shooting at a filming location in Calgary. Global News

Schweitzer said the province is hoping for interest from producers working on any and all kinds of projects, but it’s really hoping to attract TV series, which are year-over-year productions that would have a stable presence.

He said the announcement will lead to more employment of those working in blue collar jobs, as well as opportunities for small businesses and the hospitality industry.

Click to play video: 'Alberta’s film industry going strong' Alberta’s film industry going strong
Alberta’s film industry going strong – Jan 28, 2021

Read more: Alberta film industry advocates call for changes to tax credit program

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The Alberta film and TV tax credit was launched in January 2020 and since then, 31 medium-and large-scale productions have been approved, according to the province, and it’s expected they’ll bring a total of $177.6 million in investment to the province, and create 3,300 jobs.

One digital media production, 10 movies and 20 television series — 13 of which will be returning — are included in the list of those approved.

“If you’ve got a television series that you’re looking to deploy across the world, we want to hear from you here in Alberta,” Schweitzer said.

Click to play video: 'COVID-19: Alberta working on framework for the professional film industry' COVID-19: Alberta working on framework for the professional film industry
COVID-19: Alberta working on framework for the professional film industry – Jan 26, 2021

Damian Petti, president of International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees Local 212, said the announcement will lead to thousands jobs for Albertans.

“We are now a much more competitive jurisdiction with interest and major investment from the world’s largest studios and streaming companies,” Petti said.

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“Albertans can be proud of this industry and should be prepared to hear additional announcements about new projects in the near future.”

Read more: Albertans starstruck by Kevin Costner during movie filming

Companies like HBO and Warner Bros. celebrated the announcement Friday.

“Alberta is poised to become the next major production centre in Canada and with the changes to their production incentive they have made themselves competitive with many jurisdictions both inside and outside the country,” HBO executive vice-president of production Janet Graham Borba said in a statement.

Submissions for the film and tax credit opened on Jan 29, 2020, and are still open.

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