Quebec Ends 2013 With Record Hollywood Film Spending

Bryan Singer's "X-Men: Days of Future Past" shooting last year in Montreal helped the province rack up $246 million in overall budget expenditures.

TORONTO -- Now Quebec is clocking in with another record year for foreign location shooting, as Canada enjoys a strong Hollywood presence.

The Quebec Film and Television Council reports total spending by foreign, mostly Hollywood producers, in the French-speaking province last year came to CAN$273 million (US$246 million), up 12 percent from CAN$240 million (US$216.2 million) in year-earlier expenditures.

Montreal in 2013 hosted Hollywood shoots like Bryan Singer's X-Men: Days of Future Past for 20th Century Fox, the pilot for the ABC monster drama Gothica and the Lifetime biopic House of Versace.

The high-profile shoots took advantage of a Quebec film tax credit that offsets 25 percent of the film's overall budget.

Visual effects-heavy shoots like the latest in the Fox/Marvel X-Men franchise also exploited Quebec's 20 percent bonus on all CGI and green screen shots for eligible labor costs.

A year earlier in 2012, Montreal played host for Hollywood shoots like Roland Emmerich's White House Down for Columbia Pictures, and Dean Parisot's Red 2, for DC Entertaiment, Di Bonaventura Pictures and Summit Entertainment.

Quebec has seen a rebound in foreign location shooting in recent years, with total expenditures reaching CAN$250 million (US$225 million) in 2011 and CAN$215 million (US$193.5 million) in 2010.

The province is also handing out incentives packages to attract foreign VFX players such as Cinesite and Framestore to Montreal.

Hollywood foreign location shooting in Ontario and British Columbia was equally strong in 2013.

As in Quebec, a mix of tax breaks, sound stages and technical crews had A-list talent flying north for Hollywood tentpoles and international co-productions that were shot here.