Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Michigan Motion Picture Industry

Michigan Motion Pictures Studios LLC has been promised local government assistance to build a $60 million film studio here at the Centerpoint Business Campus. The Oakland County Economic Development Corp., a public-private entity, has authorized the issuance of $28 million worth of tax-exempt bonds to finance the Raleigh Michigan Studios.

With the funds, the company will renovate a 425,000-square-foot existing office building formerly used by General Motors. The company will also build a 185,000-square-foot studio. The project should be complete by January, according to a statement by the county.

The funds will help add to the emerging film industry in Michigan, according to County Executive L. Brooks Patterson. “Such growth depends on the ability of the industry to build studios such as this,” he said in a statement. Patterson appoints local bankers, real estate developers, lawyers and other members of the community to the economic development entity, which then has the authority to issue bonds.

Michigan has joined the competition for studios since it created its film incentive, officially called the film production credit. The refundable, assignable tax credit is offered for up to 42% of the amount of a production company’s expenditures (depending upon type) that are incurred in producing a film or other media entertainment project in Michigan.

An estimated $325 million has been generated so far in Michigan with more than 87 major film productions and TV projects creating 7,000 jobs. Films include Gran Torino, Dreamgirls, Transformers, Up In the Air and 8 Mile to name a few. In 2010, three more major studios are expected to open in Michigan with the number rapidly growing.

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