Existing film incentive enticed Ben-Hur, Zoolander and Spectre to Italy.


Italy has extended its successful 25% tax credit, first introduced in 2011 for film, to include television productions. 

“Like the UK, TV fiction will also be covered by the credit in exactly the same way as it is applied to film, covering 25% of expenses incurred in Italy,” said Cinecittà Studios CEO Giuseppe Basso. 

“The aim is to attract the high-profile TV productions which these days have budgets and aspirations on a par with feature films,” he added. “The tax credit law is enshrined in Italian law — there’s not time limit on its existence it’s here to stay.

Italy has seen a surge in incoming feature productions over the last 12 months following improvements to the original 2011 credit at the end of last year. 

The changes raised the cap on support from $5.4m (€5m) to $10.7m (€10m) and made it per production company, rather than per project. The credit is accessed through a local executive producer. 

The extension will be back-dated to January 1, 2015 so NBC’s Hannibal which shot in briefly in Italy this year could benefit. 

International pictures to have benefitted from the incentive include Ben-HurChrist The Lord: Out of EgyptSpectreThe Tourist, Inferno and Zoolander 2.

Paramount Pictures and MGM’s Ben-Hur, which is currently shooting in Cinecittà, managed to raise €14m, ($16m) through the combined support of Cinecittà Studios and Filmmaster Productions, both subsidiaries of the Italian Entertainment Group S.p.a., acting as executive producers. 

“The great thing about the tax credit is that is easy to combine with other incentives. Ron Howard’s Inferno, for example, has combined our incentive with a Hungarian incentive,” commented Cristina Giubbetti, sales manager international productions.