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The Beauty of Filming in a local Italian Province

          Italy has been the home production center for many blockbuster movies shown on the big screen in Canada and the United States.  Movies such as Gangs of New York, Oceans Eleven, The Passion of the Christ, The Italian Job and the Gladiator; and television programs such as The Soprano’s and Angels in America have taken advantage of the country’s picturesque beauty and extremely talented team of executive producers. 

         One of the more popular areas in Italy for filming has been the Lazio Region.  Lazio has not only grown in popularity because of its pleasant and hospitable hotel service, tasty native dishes, wonderful weather, mesmerizing landscaping or historic architecture, but also because it offers advanced technical expertise in film production and provides a financial advantage to foreign film producers.  Production executives and the government have been working together to increase the Region’s ability to service foreign producers.  The executives have committed to upgrading its production facilities with more advanced technology to allow film professionals to produce better quality final film product, while the government has improved the process for claiming film tax incentives. 

          There have been two significant changes to the government incentive programs.  First, the process for recovering the value added tax credit (VAT) has been modified.  Producers wanting to recover VAT must:   

1.      Film the majority of the production in the Lazio Region;

2.      Submit a credit reimbursement application to the Internal Revenue Office;

3.      Submit an application for the assignment of the credit to the local film fund organization and an accredited bank (with supporting documentation);

          Once the producer has fulfilled these steps, the government will grant the incentive to all qualifying applicants.  Applicants who qualify will receive a VAT tax exemption for most of the costs related to the production.  This process is better from the previous administration of the credit because it improves access to government financial support for filming in the Region. 

          Second, International co-producers filming in the Region are eligible funding of 50% of the production.  The administering body does not impose minimum spending requirements.  Co-financing and development productions filmed in partnership with a Lazio based film production company are also eligible for venture capital funds of up to 50% off funding. 

          If the stunning scenery of this Italian province or the financial and technical benefits it offers has piqued your interest, it may be time to take a trip to Italy and contact the Italian Film Commission for information about how you can qualify for funding and the tax incentives for your next production.

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