New York City Sets Record With 23 TV Shows Produced in 2011, Mayor Says
New York City served as location for a record 23 television series in the 2011-2012 season, compared with nine a decade ago, as TV and film production grew in importance to the city’s economy, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.
At a news conference on the set of “Gossip Girl” at Silvercup Studios in Queens, Bloomberg said the show spent $200 million on local development and used more than 500 vendors for paint, lumber, office supplies and other services. Last season, the show hired more than 120 principal actors, 180 crew members and more than 7,000 background actors, the mayor’s office said in a news release.
Producers used the city for all or part of 188 films and more than 140 television news, sports, reality and talk shows, the mayor said. The industry contributes about $5 billion a year to the local economy, employing more than 100,000 behind the scenes, with about 4,000 local businesses supporting productions, Bloomberg’s office said.
The mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting acts as a liason with producers, he said.
“New York City has surpassed all previous records for film and television production,” Bloomberg said in prepared remarks. “We’re proud to be home to employers like ‘Gossip Girl,’ Warner Bros. and Silvercup Studios.”
Gossip Girl is a production of Fake Empire and Alloy Entertainment in association with Warner Bros. Television and CBS Television Studios, the release said. It is carried on the CW television network.
The mayor is founder and majority owner of Bloomberg News parent Bloomberg LP.
Alan Suna, chief executive officer of Silvercup Studios, said much of the success the city has had attracting TV and movie work came from a New York state $420 million tax credit, set to expire at the end of 2014, equal to 30 percent of on-site costs spent in the state for such items as set construction, props, wardrobe, technical work and makeup.
Forty states plus Puerto Rico offer such incentives, said Joseph Chianese, senior vice president for tax planning and business development at film payroll processing company Entertainment Partners in Burbank, California.
“California offers $100 million a year in credits, which goes fast,” he said, while Louisiana and Massachusetts have no limits. “New York’s has been an extremely successful program.”
New York’s tax credit, while offering less than some states, attracts film and TV producers because of the abundance of local talent and iconic backgrounds the city offers, Suna said. The tax incentive creates more revenue for the state than it loses, by encouraging productions to spend money in New York, and should be made permanent, Suna said.
Without the program, successful shows such as Fox television’s “Fringe,” which used to be produced at Silvercup studios “just picked up and moved to other locations where tax credits were available,” Suna said.
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