French rebate aims to lure int'l players

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The French parliament has greenlighted 20% tax rebates for U.S. and other foreign shoots in France in what is hailed as good news for a country keen to attract inward investment to its filmmaking shores.

Film France managing director Patrick Lamassoure, who runs the national film commission, welcomed what he called a "historic agreement" as it is the first piece of legislation introduced to stimulate moviemaking from outside French borders.

The international tax rebates will be capped at €4 million ($5.7 million) per movie and be applied to expenditures in France by overseas shoots.

Rebates will cover labor costs, accommodations and transportation and extend to the use of French animation and VFX houses. It'll put France front and center with other nations trying to attract Hollywood shoots and indie filmmakers.

Movies, miniseries, series, TV movies and big-budget documentaries will be eligible for the rebates as long as a minimum spend of just north of $1 million is pledged by applicants.

"There (also) will be a cultural test that would-be shoots will have to pass, and it will have to contain a French element," Lamassoure said. "But the big message is you don't have to fake France; you can come and shoot here."

Projects must have a local producer on board to channel the rebates. (partialdiff)
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