Study Finds $1.2 Billion Impact of Filmed Drama in L.A.

Study Finds $1.2 Billion Impact of Filmed Drama in L.A.

from: Mark Madler, San Fernando Valley Business Journal

The loss of 29 one-hour dramas over a two-year period has cost the Los Angeles region up to $1.2 billion in production spending, a new report from FilmL.A. Inc. released on Wednesday concluded.

These shows, which include “Mad Men,” “Parenthood” and “Justified” completed their series runs between 2012 and 2014 but are not being replaced with other programs as the number of one-hour dramas filmed in California dwindles.

“The economic impact of these 29 dramas is/was enormous, and when not replaced by other locally made shows, the sting of their disappearance is keenly felt,” the study said.

FilmL.A., the Hollywood non-profit that handles production permitting in the city, unincorporated neighborhoods and other jurisdictions, used the study as a push to expand the state’s Film & Television Tax Credit Program.

The group came up with the $1.2 billion figure by estimating spending per episode for one-hour series at between $2.5 million and $5.5 million for a season that ranges from 10 episodes to 22 episodes.

With content needed for such distribution on cable, through Netflix and Amazon streaming services, and replacing the traditional summer re-runs on broadcast television, the number of one-hour dramas has increased to 200 scheduled shows in 2014 compared to 130 scheduled shows in 2005.

California, however, has seen its share of dramas dwindle to 48 shows in the 2013-2014 season from 73 shows in the 2006-2007 season. The study found that this television season would have been worse if not for the state’s filming tax credit program given to 13 shows that remained in California.

Six of the 29 dramas that ended their seasons received state tax credits.

A bill, AB 1839, is currently pending in the state Senate that would extend the program through the 2020-2021 fiscal year. The program currently receives $100 million a year but lawmakers are working to increase the amount

The bill, sponsored by Assemblymen Mike Gatto, D-Los Angeles, and Raul Bocanegra, D-Pacoima, passed the Assembly May 28.

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