Quebec Cuts Red Tape to Woo Foreign VFX Artists

11:06 AM PST 02/26/2014 by Etan Vlessing

After introducing incentive packages to attract global visual effects players, the Canadian province has made it easier to hire in-demand artists as needed.

TORONTO – First Quebec rolled out incentives packages to attract foreign VFX players like Cinesite and Framestore to Montreal.

Now the Canadian province is making it easier for local VFX firms to hire temporary artists from abroad as needed.

Quebec's ministry of immigration and cultural communities has created a new category for producers of visual effects and video games to streamline the process required to hire VFX workers.

"This recent amendment reflects the strategic role held by the cluster ActionMTL and the government’s willingness to support the growth of companies in the audiovisual sector,” Quebec film commissioner Hans Fraikin said in a statement.

Montreal has become a hotspot for foreign visual effects work due to generous tax breaks and other lucrative subsidies, just as the global industry grapples with cutting production costs and globalization.

Quebec expediting the recruitment of VFX artists in high demand in Hollywood and internationally helps local studios, as their industry relies on independent contractors hired as needed.

Last month, the Quebec government said it offered London-based Cinesite VFX an interest-free loan of $1.2 million to open a studio in Montreal to serve as its North American beachhead.

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