Film and TV booming

British Columbia is the toast of the film and TV world ... at least it is if you go by the numbers.

The Canadian Media Producers Association says in the 2016-2017 fiscal year, production volume in B.C. hit $2.991 billion, just ahead of Ontario with $2.977 billion.

It is the first time the province has been Canada's top locale for film and television production.

Blockbusters like "Deadpool 2" and "Star Trek Beyond," obviously helped boost B.C. to the top, but a thriving Okanagan industry played a factor as well.  

"We have created a film industry which is growing," says Jon Summerland from the Okanagan Film Commission. "Because of that, the whole province is a shinier place."

He adds, "here in the Okanagan we do quite well. I don't know if it is a trickle down from Vancouver being busy or B.C. is busy because it is easier for us to now sell the region."

The infrastructure in the Okanagan has grown and is now capable of supporting an increase in demand. 

"We have all the trucks and gear. We have more than 400 names on our crew database, and we have two companies that call the Okanagan home: Mind's Eye and Sepia."

Both work locally all year round, and bring in millions of dollars. 

According to Summerland, 2018 will be the year the Okanagan gets a new sound studio in West Kelowna, TV series and another animation studio.

"The Okanagan is a very good place to do animation. We have all the tech and background, and a lot of great animators ... Last night my kids and I were watching Bob's Burgers, and that was done here." 

More and more companies look to B.C. for film and television opportunities because of its tax credits, which Summerland says get better and better the further outside of Hope you travel. 

"The tax credits are very positive for the Okanagan. It is hard to beat the tax credits in the region... As soon as you are past Hope you get the best tax credits, you get another six per cent."

Film and television productions in B.C. receive a 28 per cent tax credit for labour costs. 

The credit was reduced five points from 33 per cent by the previous provincial Liberal government in 2016.

According to the Canadian Media Producers Association report the film and television industries generated 24,120 direct full-time jobs in B.C.

with files from the Canadian Press

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