Germany Cuts Funding (Again) for Film Tax Incentive

The Grand Budapest Hotel Berlin Film Festival - H 2014
Twentieth Century Fox

Wes Anderson’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and George Clooney’s “The Monuments Men” both received backing from the German Federal Film Fund, which will have its budget cut for 2015.

BERLIN - Germany has again cut funding for its popular federal film tax incentive, reducing the budget for the Federal Film Fund, or DFFF by around $14 million to $68 million (€50 million) for next year.

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This is the second such cut in as many years. In 2013, the DFFF’s budget for funding film production that shoots in Germany was around $95 million (€70 million).

The DFFF, which gives productions that shoot in Germany an upfront cash rebate on their future tax bill, has backed such recent productions as  Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel and George Clooney's The Monuments Men as well as big budget features including Cloud Atlas and Inglourious Basterds.

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The local industry says the program has been a huge success. They claim the DFFF’s investment of around $365 million (€270 million) since its start in 2007 has resulted in $3.4 billion (€2.5 billion) in film production shooting in Germany.

But like so similar tax incentive programs, the DFFF has been politically controversial in some quarters as it is seen as giving a privaleged industry an unfair tax break. German Culture Minister Monika Grutters has pledged to fight to restore funding to the DFFF.


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