FilmOntario is pleased to note the renewed commitment to providing stability and support for the film and television industry in Ontario in the 2019 Provincial Budget. This commitment to stability sends a clear message to our partners here at home and around the world that the province of Ontario is a great place to be in the film and TV business.

“Independent film and TV production spending grew by 23% to $1.6 billion from 2014 to 2017, creating over 32,000 jobs and contributing $2.3 billion to the province’s GDP,” said FilmOntario co-chair and New Real Films President Jennifer Jonas. “With this re-statement of the government’s commitment to the industry, we can expect to grow by 5% annually over the next three years, bringing an additional 7,000 jobs to Ontario.”

The Budget documents also noted the important investments in studio infrastructure at Pinewood Toronto and Cinespace Film Studios, as well as in new spaces such as Markham Movieland’s First Studio City and CBS Television Studios’ new Mississauga location, that will build on Ontario’s ability to support increased production in the province. Such investments are already attracting business, such as Netflix’s recent announcement of a production hub in Toronto, also noted in the Budget.

“The commitment shown by the government has meant that our production partners are looking at Ontario as a great place to do business,” noted John Weber, FilmOntario Treasurer and President & CEO of Take 5 Productions. “The expansion of our physical infrastructure, combined with our competitive and stable incentives, great locations, and professional on- and off-screen talent, are a great draw for producers from all over the world.”

“We look forward to working with the newly announced Ministers’ Film and Television Advisory Panel on ways to continue to grow the industry, and to find ways to support both our domestic producers and our partners from around the world who choose to come here,” added FilmOntario co-chair and ACTRA Toronto Executive Director Sue Milling. “The strength of Ontario’s production ecosystem is its balance between domestic and service work, and the 2019 Budget will allow us to continue our efforts on behalf of all our members to maintain and strengthen our unique industry make-up.”

Other Budget notes:

  • The government also announced that they will review the tax credit certification process in order to reduce processing times. FilmOntario looks forward to working with all our government partners on this initiative.
  • The threshold to qualify as a “video game developer” in the OIDMTC, and therefore allow companies to file tax credit applications annually, was reduced to $500,000.
  • According to FilmOntario research, every $1 million spent on tax credits creates 109 direct and spin-off FTEs and $7.4 million in provincial GDP. (that link should be to our report)