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BFI to certify TV, animation, games tax credit applicants

The British Film Institute (BFI) has been appointed by the UK government as the certification unit for the upcoming creative content tax reliefs, spanning high-end TV, animation and video games.

The BFI, which has administered the certification process for film since 2007, is now in the process of hiring a high-end TV/animation certification analyst and two video games certification analysts to boost its knowledge in these areas, and is due to consult with experts from each sector.

The certification unit will be the first point of contact for applicants wanting to qualify their project as eligible under co-production agreements and the UK’s cultural test, which Screen understands will be similar in design to the cultural test applied to films.

That test is based on criteria adding up to 31 points. To pass, applicants need to have 16 points and above. The new creative industries tests will be based on this system with “slight nuances for each sector”, according to the BFI.

TV dramas, comedies and documentaries with a budget of more than £1m an hour are due to be eligible to receive UK tax breaks from April 2013.

Qualifying projects will be able to secure a tax rebate of up to a quarter of 80% of their production budget if produced in the UK. As with film, there is no quota on the number of TV projects that can be greenlit in a year.

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