NC Film Crew Members pay off 22 Layaways for Struggling Families in Wilmington.

The North Carolina Film Industry might be bone dry at the moment, but that didn’t stop NC film crew members whether currently unemployed or working out-of-state from donating to their annual Great Holiday Layaway Payoff.  This wonderful campaign started three years ago when crew members would pass around the hat at EUE/Screen Gems Studios and collect some cash so they could be “Secret Santas” for a few families. This year however, it went from few to twenty-two!!! This is their biggest year yet. Because there were no production offices open to pass around the proverbial hat, crew members created a Go Fund Me, so the film family could donate no matter where they were. In 8 days, they raised $2, 240 and paid off 22 layaways for families in the Wilmington area.

The crew member who spearheads this campaign wishes to remain anonymous, but said these words:

The folks who helped me at Toys R Us said they haven’t been much into the Christmas spirit, but seeing what we have done has both touched them and helped them feel festive. They also want to spread the idea and help spark more good deeds this holiday season, which is all we can ask for. Their favorite part of all of this, they said, is calling the families to let them know they can come pick up their Christmas layaways.

Children do not need to know pain, suffering or struggle. By doing this, I’d like to think we have kept them still children and innocent for at least another holiday season.

Very well said. The North Carolina Film Crew Members take family very seriously, and this behavior is typical of them. Good hearts. Good souls. Excellent community spirit!

UPDATE: One mom who had a Layaway at ToysRUs wanted me to express this to you NC Film Crew: “I don’t know if it was the film people or someone else but my layaway at ToysRUs was paid off today. I just want to be able to thank them from the bottom of my heart! Merry Christmas to all of you. I am shaking I am so grateful.”

TNT’s Good Behavior: That’s a Wrap!

GOOD BEHAVIOR – THAT’S A WRAP!

The good boys and girls will be finishing their final shots in Wilmington late, late tonight, so…Thank you to TNT along with Executive Producers Chad Hodge and North Carolina proud Blake Crouch for keeping NC film jobs rolling, for shopping at our local businesses, and for feasting at our local restaurants and on our local catering! Thanks to Michelle Dockery, Juan Diego Botto and the rest of the cast for being so kind and as the crew have said “so great to work with.”

NC Dept. of Commerce releases Prod Cos who got the Dirty Dancing Cash

If you are an avid reader of this here blog, The Wilmywood Daily, then you’ve known most of these deets for a while now. But there were a few things that we were waiting on. Like an official announcement from the Dept. of N.C. Commerce of what we already know AND which production got what from the Dirty Dancing money.  So, here we go.

  1. TNT’s Good Behavior (Wilmington, NC) – Eligible for up to $1.25 million. 

Related Articles:

https://wilmywoodnc.com/2015/09/16/tnts-drama-good-behavior-chooses-male-lead/

https://wilmywoodnc.com/2015/09/08/wilmington-nc-crew-call-tnts-good-behavior-2/

https://wilmywoodnc.com/2015/08/27/north-carolina-natives-bring-two-productions-to-the-state/

2. The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter (Asheville, NC) – Eligible for up to $2.8 million.

Related Articles:

https://wilmywoodnc.com/2015/09/09/asheville-nc-fincannon-looking-for-10-13yd-old-boy-for-whitetail/

https://wilmywoodnc.com/2015/08/27/north-carolina-natives-bring-two-productions-to-the-state/

3. HGTV’s Love it or List it (Raleigh/Durham, NC) – Eligible for up to $950,000.

We knew a reality show got the final bit of cash from the left over money , but we didn’t know which one.  Well, now we do.

Now with the Dirty Dancing money done with and since the Governor signed the budget today, we will now see who applies for the $30M in the grant for this fiscal year. It might be a little while since they have to implement all the new language what was changed.

Revised language for $30M NCFilm Grant. Raises Cap for TV series.

Last week, Senator Michael Lee announced that the leadership of the House and Senate agreed to replenish the NC Film Grant with $60M for the next 2 fiscal years — $30M per fiscal year.  The next step was to revise the language of the film grant.  The goal was to focus more on television series rather than features which would be more beneficial to NC Film Crew and small businesses.  Most of the changes relate to that.

The budget compromise is 429 pages long and the Senate will be voting on the deal tomorrow.  Someone bring in the coffee, Jolt Cola and Red Bull please cuz it’s gonna be a long night!  Seriously, how on earth can one human carefully go through 429 pages and know what the hell they are voting on?  I’m definitely NOT saying to NOT end this thing. Lord knows this budget is almost 11 weeks overdue, but…well, I’m just sayin’! At least the House requires 72 hours before voting after receiving a monster like this budget.  The Senate, however, does not.  FYI, according to Colin Campbell over at the N&O, this year’s budget will be the longest-delayed spending plan since 2002.

Our legislators in the NC Senate in general as you know are NOT fans of the film industry. So you can imagine what it would be like to fight for it.  It’s like trying to run up a tidal wave. So, any changes that were made, were nothing short of a miracle. So, if you have a moment, please make a call or send an email to Michael Lee, Bill Rabon, and Harry Brown on the Senate side and of course Rep. Ted Davis in the House and thank them for fighting for us.

Anyway, let’s get to it. What are the major changes in the language?

First, the NC Film Grant is a five year plan, expiring July 1, 2020. In this budget we are replenished for the first two years.

Currently the NC Film Grant has a minimum spend of $250,000 per episode for video or television series. The minimum spend will increase to $1M per episode.  As a dear friend of mine put it, that will assure we don’t get a lot of low budget/low rate crapola. Yeah, I’d say that’s a good way to put it.

Feature Films remain at $5M. Commercials remain the same as well at $250,000.

Now for the cap! We all detest the $5M cap. The current cap has a max rebate of $5M, up to 25% on qualified expenses/purchases of productions for an entire television series or feature film.  We lost out on a few projects because of that! So, the good news is that the max payout will be raised from $5M to $9M for a single television series.

Now here’s where it gets interesting.  All things are not created equal.  Like feature films. The current the rebate would remain the same at $5M.

You see what they did there? Do I love it? Not really. But should we focus on longer term projects such as television? Yes. As I stated earlier, the goal was to focus more on television series – longer term jobs for the crew and more spending with our vendors. Television is more important to our film folks.

Of course we all wish we could just go back to our good old film incentives, and throw the grant out the window. But it is what it is and we can only move forward from here. What we have in the new budget will get us back on our feet, so in the end it’s worth smiling about.

Other changes include fringe benefits for those who work less than 35 hours per week. In the new grant language, it removes the 35 hours.  I don’t have a complete understanding about this yet.

So now the Senate will vote then the House this week.  Will they make their Friday deadline?  Will the Governor veto? We shall see…

SEE HOUSE BILL 97 NOW (Film Grant on page 299)

 

NC House/Senate agree on Film Grant Money

Even though the NC state budget still has yet to be passed, the leadership of the House and the Senate have agreed upon a number for the next two fiscal years for the NC Film Grant.  It will be allotted $30 million for each fiscal year. That’s $60M total.

After the agreement, Senator Michael Lee of New Hanover County said, “We would’ve loved to have the number higher, but Rep. Davis and I worked really hard to get it to that level. I’d like to thank the Small Business for Film Group for all their support. They really made a big difference.  It’s a great day for New Hanover County and the state of North Carolina.”

They are now currently working on tweaking the language of the NC Film Grant.

More to come!

 

 

 

Is Film Dead in North Carolina? No. Here’s Why.

I know a lot of people are bummed, devastated, heartbroken (INSERT YOUR FEELINGS HERE). So I thought it would lighten the mood a little bit and give you a few things to think about.

Under the Dome is leaving, yes that is true, however, we are not dead. Film is not dead in North Carolina. It’s not even close to how it was in 2013 or 2014 and who knows if it ever will be, but there are some things we can look forward to.

There are a few possibilities. Since Dirty Dancing never used the $4,000,000 from the NC Film Grant, there are production companies who have already applied. It looks like Wilmington (if all goes well) will hopefully have one if not two pilots. One from TNT and another possibly from NBC. One would have an October start date. That’s all I am saying about that for the moment.

Now, in the next two weeks we will know what kind of numbers are going to come out of the General Assembly. We know at the very least it will be $10M but what we’re hoping for is something above $25M. $40M+ of course is preferable. That will keep some of our crew afloat. Once we get that in play we should have some definite confirmations from productions companies who wish to film here.

I do know that on the western side of the state there is a Danny McBride flick that would also like to film this fall.  That will depend on the NC Film Grant for this fiscal year. It’s titled The Legacy Of A Whitetail Deer Hunter and stars Josh Brolin and Danny McBride.  And can I please give a HUGE thanks to to Jody and Danny for trying to bring everything they can to North Carolina.  I know the crew and vendors are very grateful.

We should know who exactly applied for the grant by the end of next week and how many.

So all hope is not lost. I hope this gives you some peace. I know it’s hard because our film family is being torn apart as people have to relocate to do what they do for a living. But there will be at least some work to look forward to.

Love you guys and gals – stay strong!

NORTH CAROLINA – $4 MILLION IMMEDIATELY AVAILABLE AS PART OF NC FILM INCENTIVE

image

JULY 27th, 2015

NORTH CAROLINA – $4 MILLION IMMEDIATELY AVAILABLE 
AS PART OF NC FILM INCENTIVE

Today, North Carolina has opened the application process to award $ 4 million in immediate funding from the NC Film Grant.  These are unused funds that were returned from the previous funding cycle earlier this year.  Applications for projects are being accepted beginning today through 5pm on Friday, August 7.  Click here to learn more about the qualifications and the application process.

Regarding future funding for the NC Film Grant Fund, the North Carolina Legislature has yet to finalize the State Budget for FY 15/16 and FY 16/17.  We expect this process to be completed in the next two months.  At that time, we will release further information regarding future availability of funds and the application process.

Meanwhile, film and television work continues in North Carolina with seasoned crews, exceptional facilities, diverse locations, and great weather.  So Just Relax, and give us a call today.

Regards,

Johnny Griffin
Director
Wilmington Regional Film Commission

SEE GRANT INFO HERE

PROOF: NC Film pumps money into the economy

You want proof that the North Carolina Film Industry creates revenue? Just ask the state’s own Department of Revenue who have released the numbers.  As one crew member said, “This official state report PROVES that film in North Carolina pumps money into the economy…and lots of it!”

http://freepdfhosting.com/43f96e6e17.pdf

The report above gives you an exact look of how much money was spent in North Carolina via production companies and exactly how much each production got back.

The NCDOR reports from 2005-2014 all in one PDF (above).

The last page illustrates that in 2014 film productions spent over $241M in the state and got back just over $60M.

These numbers come from the state, not any bias party. How much more proof does one need?

UTDradio

North Carolina loses another production to Georgia

(Photo Source: http://i.telegraph.co.uk/)

Well, we can thank the General Assembly for this news…

I have just been told the original Netflix series starring Winona Ryder which had a close eye on Wilmywood, ultimately decided to go where most do these days. Georgia. A couple of heads of production scouted here last week and were very pleased with Wilmington. The creatives especially. One of the main reasons they really liked Wilmington is it could easily double for the town of Montauk which is located on the very eastern tip of Long Island. It’s a fishing village but also has very expensive estates, and a lot of very old money. Certain areas of Wilmington could perfectly double for Montauk and from what I have been told the creatives agreed.

But money always wins in the end. Because North Carolina is into its new fiscal year with absolutely ZERO dollars for film, Wilmington lost yet another show.

Some folks are saying they are going to Atlanta, however, the closest thing they will get for Montauk is Tybee Island — where they shot Sponge Bob 2. It will be a much harder task to recreate Montauk in Georgia, but until North Carolina gets their shit together (pardon my French), productions will just be a passing ship through the night for us.

Is very heartbreaking as it would have that worked out perfectly especially for the Under the Dome crew who possibly could have rolled over to that show which will be filming through 2016.

300 jobs. Poof.

UTDradio

EDDIE CAHILL goes Under the Dome for Season 3

The countdown continues! ONLY 3 more days until the premiere of Season 3 of Under the Dome! Yes! And this time we got Eddie Cahill! During the CBS Press Junket for Season 3, we caught up with Eddie who plays Sam on the show.  We discuss the new season, comic books, Wilmywood and more. Enjoy!

Under the Dome‘s two-hour premiere is Thursday, June 25, 2015 from 9pm-11pm EST on CBS!

UTDradioCamera Crew:
Charles Roarke
Jonathan Herring

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