Film and TV industries leaving L.A. for better deals

Los Angeles, the home of Hollywood, is what many people call the entertainment capital of the world. But much of the city’s television and film industry is leaving Los Angeles for other cities in the United States and other countries.

Steve Michelson is part owner of a catering company that feeds the cast and crew of several Los Angeles-based shows. He says that in recent years, business has not been good.

“I have individuals doing jobs that two or three people used to do,” said Michelson. “A company yesterday called me. They have five catering trucks they want to sell me. They want to go out of business.”

Some caterers for the television and film industry are leaving Los Angeles, following productions to other cities.

The president of Film LA, Paul Audley, said there has been a dramatic change, particularly in the television industry.

“This year, for example, we know of the 23 new television dramas,” Audley noted. “Twenty-one of them are going out of state and they used to virtually all be filmed here. We had more than 80 percent of television, and now we’re down to about 40 percent.”

Universal Television’s Bela Bajaria says studio executives consider two main factors when deciding where to shoot a film or TV show.

“A big part of it is obviously creatively, that we can really realize what’s on the page. The other equally as important part is actually a tax incentive,” Bajaria explained.

Bajaria says cities outside of Los Angeles started becoming attractive to studios about a decade ago.

“It was about 10 years ago, New Orleans really came out with some first tax credits and a couple of the other states really followed.”

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