Michigan's Goldilocks Approach
The state decided its film incentives, which brought movies like "Sparkle" and "Alex Cross" to its home turf, were too generous. Scaling back, the program looked too stingy. Now it has allocated $50 million, hoping it's got it just right.
The year 2010 was a banner period for Michigan's film production industry, but it also triggered a fierce debate over the value of incentives. Launched by former Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm in 2008, Michigan's generous program, offering as much as 42 percent in refundable tax credits on qualified production spending in the state, attracted such projects as DreamWorks' $110 million Real Steel and New Line's comedy A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas. They were among a record 45 productions that flocked to Michigan that year, spending $293 million in the state.
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