Film i Väst launches the first Swedish tax-rebate scheme
by Vassilis Economou
- With the support of the Västra Götaland County, the regional film fund has announced a pilot incentive programme to attract international co-productions and give a boost to the local industry
For the first time ever, an incentive programme for the shooting and post-production of films and TV series is being introduced in Sweden, as Film i Väst and Västra Götaland County have announced the launch of a pilot production tax-rebate programme. The scheme, dubbed Västra Götaland Production Rebate (VGPR), will be financed by the region and will be administrated by Film i Väst, Scandinavia’s leading regional film fund.
More precisely, the VGPR will be available for the production of feature films and scripted TV dramas that are shot or post-produced, either completely or partially, in the Västra Götaland region, and will cover up to 30% of qualifying local expenditure. The feature-length projects should start from a minimum budget of SEK 40 million (€3.78 million) while the TV dramas should cost SEK 8 million (€756,500) per hour. Also, the minimum expenditures for shooting and post-production in the region should be SEK 5 million (€473,000) and SEK 3 million (€284,000), respectively.
On the practical side, only established European production companies, having produced at least one successfully distributed film or TV drama in the past three years, are eligible. Also, a Swedish producer or co-producer should be on board, which may apply, receive the funds and will manage production duties on location. Finally, the VGPR cannot be combined with Film i Väst’s regular co-production funding. The deadline for the first round of applications is 31 March 2019, and more information can be found here.
Mikael Fellenius, CEO of Film i Väst, stated: “Film i Väst has been the driving force behind the introduction of a national Swedish production incentive, and we are almost there. Västra Götaland is already Scandinavia’s foremost film region with an efficient production and post-production infrastructure as well as lots of skilled talent. The new production rebate will make us as competitive on the financial side as we are on the creative and production side.”
As widely expected, the VGPR aims to attract more international co-productions to West Sweden, and further boost local companies and enable them to expand. This is something that Kristina Jonäng, chair of the Regional Development Board in the Västra Götaland region, also underlines, as she adds: “The fact that we are the first is a big step forward for the entire film industry.
Some of the upcoming international co-productions that have already been supported by Film i Väst include The Alcohol Project by Danish helmer Thomas Vinterberg, the untitled new project by Sally Potter, and a zombie film featuring an all-star cast, including Tilda Swinton, Adam Driver and Bill Murray, among others, The Dead Don't Die by Jim Jarmusch. Also, some of the recent films co-produced with the regional fund are Out Stealing Horses [+see also:
interview: Hans Petter Moland
film profile] by Hans Petter Moland, The Kindness of Strangers [+see also:
interview: Lone Scherfig
film profile] by Lone Scherfig, Monos [+see also:
film profile] by Alejandro Landes, The Miracle of the Sargasso Sea [+see also:
film profile] by Syllas Tzoumerkas and the Oscar-nominated The Wife [+see also:
interview: Björn Runge
film profile] by Björn Runge.
It’s worth noting that until now, Sweden and Denmark had been the only Nordic, and some of the very few European, countries not to have introduced national tax-rebate schemes for film production.
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