Los Angeles Business Journal

Report Says L.A. Continues to Lose TV Production Business

By Deborah Crowe Tuesday, July 3, 2012

On-location production in Los Angeles fell in the second quarter, with a rise in feature film production failing to offset a double-digit percentage decline in television production.

The 11,209 permitted days of production was down 0.4 percent from a year earlier and 1.3 percent from the first quarter, according to Film L.A., which coordinates filming permits in the City of Los Angeles, unincorporated Los Angeles County and other local jurisdictions.

On-location days for television filming, which accounted for about a third of total production, were down 15.4 percent from a year earlier. Feature filming rose 9.1 percent, and productions of commercials jumped 28 percent.

The reduction in overall filming prompted FilmL.A. President Paul Audley to call for state legislators to expand California’s film incentive and subsidy program.

"For many years, we've relied on television to backfill the hole left by the flight of feature film production from the L.A. region,” said Audley in a statement. “Television has been our bread and butter, but with Sacramento's inaction to stem our losses other states and countries are eating off our plate.”

The California Film & Television Tax Credit Program drew both television and feature film projects to the region, but the impact was insufficient to stem the outflow to other states.

The tax credit program brought five TV projects to the area in the quarter, including “Major Crimes,” “Pretty Little Liars,” and “Rizzoli and Isles, but Film L.A. noted that incentivized shows accounted for less than 2 percent of all television production during the period. The impact was larger for feature films. Incentivized projects such as “The Bling Ring,” “Look of Love” and “Stand Up Guys” accounted 9.1 percent of feature production in the quarter

Producers told FilmL.A. that projects related to the upcoming Summer Olympic Games had been significant driver of the increasing commercial work.