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On Location: L.A. film activity dropped 20% last week

April 26, 2011 |  9:54 am

Dud It was a dud for on-location filming in Los Angeles last week.

Overall production activity dropped 20% compared with the same period a year ago, according to the latest data from FilmL.A. Inc., the nonprofit group that handles film permits for the city and much of the county.

The declines in on-location shoots -- which occur on streets and noncertified soundstages -- were across the board. Television activity fell 12%, continuing a slide in reality TV and drama production; commercials plummeted 26%; and features had a 35% falloff in production days between Monday through Sunday, compared with the same time a year ago. 

On-location shoots for features have been down in double digits over the last several weeks, reflecting a paucity of large studio movies filming locally and the winding down of productions that received state tax credits.

The credits helped to stem production flight from Southern California in the fourth quarter of 2010 and the first quarter of this year.

However, most of the projects that received tax-credit approvals have already completed filming, and others lining up for the incentives will have to wait until June 2, when the California Film Commission will divvy up next year's $100- million allocation.

Since it took effect in July 2009, California’s film tax credit has allocated $300 million in tax credits to 113 film and TV projects, mainly low-budget feature films such as "Lincoln Lawyer" and cable TV productions, including "Amish Grace"  on the Lifetime Movie Network.

-- Richard Verrier


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