Ava DuVernay's 'A Wrinkle in Time' to Get California Tax Credit

Ava DuVernay Getty H 2016
Getty Images

Ava DuVernay Getty H 2016

Warner Bros. 'A Star is Born' and Paramount's 'Friday the 13th' also are among the 28 projects that have been selected to receive a collective $109 million in tax credits.

Disney’s A Wrinkle in Time, Ava DuVernay’s adaptation of the Madeleine L’Engle book, is among 28 projects that have been selected to receive tax credits under California’s expanded Film & Television Tax Credit Program. While the big-budget feature, the story of a girl exploring other realms in the universe in which Oprah Winfrey will appear, would not have qualified under previous incarnations of the incentive program which did not accept projects with budgets greater than $75 million, the new program, dubbed Program 2.0, is open to film projects of any budget — although credits are capped to each studio-produced film’s first $100 million in qualified spending.

The full list of projects chosen, which will divvy up $109 million in tax credits among them, includes 18 studio projects, including Warner Bros.' A Star Is Born and New Line's Game Night, and 10 independently-produced features. At least five of the projects, including Wrinkle, Friday the 13th, Magic Camp, Rogue and Private Benjamins, will shoot extensively outside of Los Angeles' 30-mile zone, bringing production activity to other parts of the state, today's announcement notes. Collectively, the 28 films are expected to spend $880 million in the state, including $326 million in qualified wages to more than 5,900 crew and cast members.

The California Film commission estimates that Wrinkle, the first big-budget project accepted under the new program that Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law in September, 2014, will bring $85 million in qualified spending to California and will employ nearly 400 cast and crew members, with $44 million in wages paid to below-the-line workers. 

“The California tax credit made it possible to base production in California,” producer Jim Whitaker said as part of the announcement. “We considered several other locations, but felt that the spectacular landscapes and intimate, real settings found in California perfectly met Ava DuVernay’s directorial vision for A Wrinkle in Time. The entire crew is incredibly excited as we all appreciate the ability to come home to our families at night.”

Commented California Film Commissioner executive director Amy Lemish, “Large-scale feature films like A Wrinkle in Time are among the most at-risk for runaway production. California’s expanded tax credit program is working as intended, and this project alone will employ hundreds of in-state crew members and visual effects artists.”

The first feature film application period for year-two of Program 2.0 ran from June 27-July 8 and drew 91 applications. If any applicants on the list released today withdraw from the program, their tax credits will be reassigned to those on the waiting list. Projects were selected based on their jobs ratio score, which ranks each project by wages to below-the-line workers, qualified spending for vendors and equipment and other criteria.

The next application period for the program will be held from Nov. 14-19 for television projects.

The complete list of approved projects follows:

105 and Rising     Rising Movie, LLC

A Star is Born       WB Studio Enterprises, Inc.

Action Park           Paramount Pictures Corporation

Entry Level            Content Media Corporation

Force                     Paramount Pictures Corporation

Friday the 13th       Paramount Pictures Corporation

Game Night           New Line Productions, Inc.

Get It While You Can     Get It While You Can Productions, LLC

Hide (PTC)             Netflix

Home Invasion       Paramount Pictures Corporation

La Llorona              Mutiny Pictures, Inc.

Magic Camp           Ultimo Films, Inc.

Miles                       Lakeshore Entertainment Group

Monolith                  Lions Gate Entertainment, Inc.

Newsies Digital Capture   Buena Vista Theatrical Group, LTD

Overboard               Sneak Preview Productions, Inc.

Plus One                  Lions Gate Entertainment, Inc.

Private Benjamins     New Line Productions, Inc.

Quick Draw               Content Media Corporation

Rogue                       Film 5 Entertainment, LLC

Russ & Roger            STX Filmworks, Inc.

Sandy                        Sandy Production, Inc.

Tag                             New Line Productions, Inc.

The Young Ones        Sneak Preview Productions, Inc

Untitled WWE Studios Project   WWE Studios Finance Corp.

Valley Girl                    Sneak Preview Productions, Inc.

Wrinkle in Time            Tesseract Productions, Inc.