Thursday, April 16, 2009

Is Michigan film-friendly enough?

By Olivia Pulsinelli | Michigan Business Review | April 16, 2009

While Michigan's film-incentive program is still in its infancy, many in the industry say the state still has work to do.

"We just have to get moving," said Deb Havens, founding and current chair of the West Michigan Film and Video Alliance. "We're really not in any position to kiss this off. Michigan is in very big need -- and so is the rest of our country. It would be great if we could actually turn around some of this economic panic, and we've already gone so far."

In the one year the incentives have been on the books, 35 approved projects have completed their work in the state. According to the Michigan Film Office's 2008 annual report, refundable tax credits totaled nearly $50 million.

An economic-impact study Michigan State University conducted in February reported that, through a multiplier effect, film expenditures generated a total of $93.8 million in state output last year. The study predicts total expenditures will grow 187 percent from 2008 to 2012.

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