Pennsylvania Film Tax Credit Program May Expand

Pittsburgh Business Journal

Gov. Tom Corbett said Thursday that he hoped to expand the commonwealth’s film production tax credit when Pennsylvania’s budget circumstances allowed.

Speaking at the “The Dark Knight Rises” news conference Downtown ahead of production on the Batman film starting Friday, Corbett said he knew it was right to keep the tax credit despite Pennsylvania’s dire budget situation earlier this year. He didn’t say when it could be increased but noted the state’s film industry started from very little 30 or 40 years ago and has grown. No details were immediately available on how the tax credit program could be expanded.

“The Dark Knight Rises” does not qualify for the film and tax credit, which requires a film to have 60 percent or more of the production based in Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh is only one of five major shooting locations on three continents for “The Dark Knight Rises.” Shooting began three months ago in India, then moved to London before arriving in Pittsburgh. The next stops will be New York and Los Angeles.

Allegheny County Executive Dan Onoratopraised Corbett, his opponent in last November’s election, for keeping the film tax credit.

“If there was ever a doubt about whether we should keep the film and tax credit” then Pittsburgh’s raised profile with Hollywood should put that to rest, Onorato said.

Corbett told the news conference there was a “healthy competition” between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh when it came to luring film production.

“We’re better,” Pittsburgh Film Office director Dawn M. Keezer told Corbett to laughter.

Corbett, a western Pennsylvania native, said: “I do like them [Philadelphia] but this is home.”

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