Movie Incentive Bill pending in Senate
JEFFERSON COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) - We have a lot of things that entice the movie industry to come to Mississippi. For instance, we've got ready-made sets everywhere. You don't have to put up a façade of an old church, for instance. We've got them all over the place. But there are some things that could make Mississippi more enticing to the movie industry. One of them is coming up for a vote in the legislature Tuesday.
It is entitled the Motion Picture Incentive Act. Tate Taylor is directing a movie in the Natchez area right now staring one of his favorites that he teamed up with when he directed The Help, Octavia Spencer. But it's costing almost a half million dollars more to shoot this movie in Mississippi than it would if he just hopped across the bridge and shot it in Louisiana.
Producer John Norris says it's because of the way Louisiana and other southern states, like Georgia for instance, assist the movie company. Mississippi rebates a percentage of what is paid to Mississippi residents working on a movie, but not out of state people.
John says that's almost a DIS-incentive at the moment.
"There aren't a ton of people in Mississippi that live here that work in film," said Norris. "So we are working to get the non-resident portion of the film incentive to function here. In Louisiana right now the rebate includes non-residents so they're able to qualify for that portion; makes it a little bit cheaper to shoot in Louisiana," added Norris. "Uh, but we've planted our flag here. We've shot three movies here. I've shot four. And we want to stay here and continue to work."
Here in Mississippi we've got the lights, we've got the cameras, we just need the action.
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