What is the Film Office

The Film Office (ie a reception and service office for audiovisual productions, movies, commercials, etc.) is an initiative addressed at a big number of the market share, with the aim of attracting in a coordinated and effective way the implementation of international film productions in Greece.

The purpose of the Film Office is to be a hub for managing film requests, as well as connecting professionals and organizations related to the execution of an audiovisual production.

The operation of the Film Offices in the Regions is funded by the Ministry of Digital Policy. However, the Region of Western Greece takes also advantage of parallel, additional opportunities to attract the most important international organizations that could invest in the film industry.

In this context, through its participation in the European project CIAK, which is funded by the Cross-Border Program Interreg V / A Greece-Italy (EL-IT) 2014-2020, the Region of Western Greece created its own Film Office with the aim of attracting audiovisual production in the Regional Units of Aitoloakarnania, Achaia and Ilia.

The office started its function at the end of January 2019, at the junction of Amerikis and Aigiou Streets in Patras.

 

The European CIAK Project

The European project CIAK with the detailed title "Joint initiatives for the recognition and exploitation of the tourism potential of the program area through cinema - Common Initiatives to AcKnowledge and valorize tourism potential of the program area through cinema" is funded by the INTERREG Cross-Border Cooperation Program between Greece and Italy [Interreg VA Greece-Italy] 2014-2020. The project is part of Priority Axis 2 - Integrated environmental management - with a budget of about 900,000.00 euros. It aims to promote the utilization of the involved areas of Puglia and the Greek Regions by implementing initiatives related to the audiovisual sector, creating the opportunity to become more widely known and to highlight the attractiveness of the sites, as well as their historical and natural beauty as catalysts for their tourism development.

 

Services provided by the Film Office of the Region Unit of Western Greece

The design of the structure of the Film Office operation aims to answer questions such as the management of the shooting locations, the coordination between the involved public bodies (e.g. Municipalities, Regions, Ministries, etc.), the licensing of shooting, the receipt of appropriate equipment, finding suitable accommodation, etc.

In particular, the creation of a Film Office in the Region of Western Greece will offer support to productions in order to accelerate and normalize those services that require decisions and authorizations from the public administration or government agencies.

The Film Office provides international companies and professionals with focused and for public use services such as:

 

• Reception of shooting licensing applications / Coordination of co-competent bodies / Welcome and support of producers, with the aim of minimizing administrative bureaucratic acts (one stop shop) 

• Information on current legislation on issues related to a production 

• Monitoring the issuance of licenses / Issuance of all required licenses collected by all competent bodies to a Greek or Foreign producer 

• Information and support for practical issues related to production (accommodation, food, transport, equipment, etc.) 

• Finding suitable public and private shooting locations depending on the needs of the production / Locating location and suggestions of activities on site 

• Implementation and updating of electronic databases: photos and / or videos of locations (Location Guide) and professionals and local experts (Production Guide) for all shooting locations (public or private) 

• Consulting services for finding private sponsorships / funding 

• Support for cinematic equipment import procedures

• Promotion of further vocational training, education and retraining of institutions in the sector 

• Mediation between the audiovisual sector, local industry, banks and other sectors involved 

• Supporting investments in the audiovisual sector, while promoting the areas with their individual cultural, artistic, tourist, local and industrial characteristics.

I. Cash Rebate

The implementation of Law 4487/2017 for the operation of the cash rebate, was a decisive step in attracting investments through the production of films, TV series, documentaries, cartoons and digital games in Greece.

In September 2018 (Law 4563/2018), the subsidy rate increased to 35%, while from July 2020 (Law 4704/2020) it amounts to 40%, offering a more flexible framework for the inclusion of television series (with a minimum eligible costs (€ 15,000 to € 25,000 per episode) and digital games (with a minimum eligible costs of € 30,000). The new legislation provides for a minimum of € 60,000 for both documentaries and short films, while the minimum eligible costs for fiction films remain at € 100,000.

The Greek cash rebate has no ceiling on the return of money: a greater investment in eligible expenses equals a greater return from the program! In addition, it can act as a guarantee for producers to lend through Greek banks. The financing of the grant was provided by the Public Investment Program, from which € 75,000,000 have been committed for the years 2018 to 2022. From April 2018 to September 2020, 86 applications have been approved for project financing (of which 43 are international and 43 Greek productions). The amount of invested funds in the country amounts to 90 million euros, while the amount of the refund through the cash rebate amounts to 30 million euros.

 

II. Tax Relief (Tax Incentive)

With the implementation of L.4172 / 2013-71E and JM 1007 / 09-01-2019, EKOME now manages the tax relief program, which provides a tax exemption of 30% for investments in domestic productions (through same procedure as for the cash rebate). The program can be utilized in combination with the cash rebate reaching up to 50% of the total production cost of a project.

 

Data source: National Center for Audiovisual Media (EKOME)

 

30% Tax Incentive

KYA No. 1007 / 09-01-2019

 

Cash Rebate 35%

Cash refund to domestic and / or foreign audiovisual production at a rate of 35% of eligible costs incurred in Greece. The production of audiovisual works supports films, documentaries, TV series, cartoons and digital games that select Greece as the place of main production and / or post-production and concerns audiovisual productions that cost at least € 100,000 and respectively € 30,000 per episode in Greece. the cultural criteria set by the legislation. The amount of Cash Rebate aid is not taxed because it is a reduction of the production cost of the project.

Law 4487/17 (Government Gazette 116 / Α / 9-8-2017)

Law 4563/18 (Government Gazette 169 / Α / 20-9-2018)

JM 128 / 11-12-2018 (Government Gazette 5810 / Β / 24-12-2018)

CIAK – Western Greece

The Region of Western Greece created its own Film Office to support and facilitate the development of audiovisual productions in Western Greece. It is an office for attracting and supporting audiovisual productions, which is the reference point and first contact during the shooting of film productions in Western Greece.

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