Archive for December 8th, 2008

New 481 Rules

8th December 2008 by Maura McHugh

Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board (IFB) has applauded new improvements to Section 481, the Irish tax incentive for film and television, announced today by the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism Mr. Martin Cullen.

The current Section 481 incentive which extends to 2012 has been amended in order to restore the competitiveness of Ireland as an international film and television location. As a result of these amendments, Ireland is now in a position to offer an extremely attractive package to international producers who choose Ireland as a location, comparing favourably with international competitors.

The benefits of high levels of film and television production in Ireland will include increased international investment in the economy, increased employment in this sector, positive spin-off effects for promoting Ireland as a tourist location and the improvement of Ireland as an industrial location for all aspects of creative endeavors.

Commenting on this recommendation James Morris, Bord Scannán na hÉireann/the Irish Film Board Chairman said “With the introduction of these amendments the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism is signaling a clear vote of confidence in the industry to deliver not only on the immediate employment and overseas investments in the next twelve months but also on the long term potential for the industry to continue to grow. In this context recently gathered statistics demonstrate dramatically the success of Government policy of promoting an Irish based screen industry through direct funding and film tax incentives. Since 1992 the numbers in the industry have grown from 1000 directly employed to 6000 in 2008 and given the nature of film and television production, this also represents substantial additional spin-off benefits in terms of expenditure in the wider economy.’

The new changes to the tax incentive were introduced by Government in response to the IFB commissioned report ‘Restoring Viability and Balance to the Irish Film Production Industry’ which was submitted to the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Martin Cullen earlier this year and will be implemented in the 2009 Finance Bill.

The new changes will assist the IFB and the sector to raise the profile of Ireland as an international film and television location and entice Hollywood productions to locate in Ireland. Whilst Ireland has not attracted any major US features to film on location here this year, IFB-funded film and television projects contributed an estimated total of over €75 million to the Irish economy in 2008, showing a significant return on government investment in this sector. Improvements to our tax incentive for film production will have the direct effect of increasing this return to the economy in 2009.

Thornton Wins Euro Award

8th December 2008 by Maura McHugh

The European Film Awards were announced at the weekend.

Irish writer/director Darren Thornton won the European Film Academy Short Film Award, the Prix UIP, for his short film “Frankie”.

The European Screenwriter 2008 was awarded to Maurizio Braucci, Ugo Chiti, Gianni di Gregorio, Matteo Garrone, Massimo Gaudioso & Roberto Saviano for Gomorrah. The film is adapted from the novel by Roberto Saviano.

Gomorrah, which won this year’s Cannes Grand Prix, was also named European Film of the Year, and nabbed European Director for Matteo Garrone.

A full list of all the winners is available on the web site.