I once auditioned for Degrassi Junior High on CTV and a Walt Disney movie featuring Adam Beach. It soon became apparent that my Hollywood star was not going to shine and that even though Paul Walker and Jessica Alba can make it onto the big screen I was not going to be as fortunate. However, there is still ample opportunity for Canadians to make it in Hollywood or even Toronto with the implementation of various grants and tax advantages. Who knows maybe I'll star in the Paul Gross's Men With Brooms Part Deux – The Night of the Bonspeil.Lucrative tax incentives and other funding are available to help nurture film and television production in this country, according to KPMG's global publication Film Financing and Television Programming – A Taxation Guide (Fifth Edition).These federal and provincial tax incentives, along with government support through loans, grants, equity investment, and corporate funding, provide for a fertile business environment, ensuring that Canada remains a great place for new and aspiring film and television producers."These incentives, including refundable tax credits, may not be widely known to newcomers to the film and television industry," says Ryan Friedman, Tax Partner with KPMG in Canada's Communications and Media practice. "This 'hidden money', along with incentives from film commissions in various provinces and territories, provide location and production assistance that truly help to make Canada 'Hollywood North'."The Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit (CFVPTC) is a fully refundable tax credit for qualified Canadian production companies that own the copyright in the production. The Income Tax Act and Regulations outline the tests that a Canadian production must meet to earn this production credit.The CFVPTC is available to taxable Canadian corporations whose primary business activity is the production of Canadian certified films that are carried on through a permanent establishment in Canada. In order to qualify for this credit, the producer of the production must be a Canadian resident individual or eligible corporation from beginning to end of production.Non-Canadians who wish to produce films or television shows in Canada are eligible for funding through the Production Services Tax Credit, which is mirrored in certain provinces as well.Additionally, Canadian provincial governments offer various tax credits to those under their respective jurisdictions. These include:• Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit (OFTTC)• Ontario Production Services Tax Credit (OPSTC)• Ontario Computer Animation and Special Effects (OCASE)• Film Incentive BC (FIBC)• British Columbia Production Services Tax Credit (PSTC)• The Alberta Film Development Program• Saskatchewan Film Employment Tax Credit • Manitoba Film and Video Tax Credit• Quebec Film and Television Production Tax credit• Quebec Production Services Tax Credit• Quebec Dubbing Tax Credit• Nova Scotia Film Industry Tax Credit• New Brunswick Film Tax Credit• Newfoundland and Labrador Film and Video Tax Credit• Film Location Incentive (Yukon). "It is commendable that our government bodies, both at the federal and provincial levels, are committed to the film industry's sustainability and, hopefully, its growth. Independent film producers should avail themselves of this non-repayable free financing," says Kathy Cunningham, Industry Sector Leader, Communications and Media practice, KPMG in Canada. "However, in order to benefit from these incentives, one must first be aware of them. The Taxation Guide provides this essential information."KPMG's Taxation Guide is a useful tool for those looking to learn about accessing these credits. However, it is still recommended that aspiring producers seek the advice of tax professionals. "These initiatives demonstrate quite clearly that producing films and television in Canada need not just be 'a labour of love'," says Friedman. "It also makes good business sense and adds to our cultural and financial well-being."
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