Germany has boosted its filmmaking relief fund to more than €100m ($117m), following major demand from producers whose shoots have been disrupted by the pandemic.
An additional €19m has been added to the €81.5m already allocated through Germany’s Production Continuation Fund, after producers lobbied Monika Grütters, state minister for culture and media (BKM) for state support.
It follows a move last September, when Grütters followed the lead of other European countries such as Austria, France, Netherlands and the UK to launch a €50m insurance fund - part of the German government’s €1bn Restart Culture programme. A further €31.5m same from 11 of the 16 German federal states.
The main hubs of the German film and TV industries have made sizeable contributions to the fund, with Berlin allocating €6m, North Rhine-Westphalia and Bavaria €5m each, Brandenburg €4m and Hamburg €3.5m.
The fund covers productions forced to stop up to September 30, 2021 in Germany or abroad, during the so-called “risk period” – the last four weeks of pre-production or during the original shoot.
The features and TV series able to benefit from this fund are those productions supported under the DFFF 1 programme, the German Motion Picture Fund, Minister Grütters’ BKM cultural fund, or by the project or reference film funding programmes administered by the German Federal Film Board (FFA). The latter has been charged with managing this relief fund.
The non-repayable payments made by the FFA will depend in the level of federal subsidy funding received by a particular production: if the federal subsidy funding is more than 50% of the total amount of all public subsidies, the FFA will pay up to 95% of the recognised income loss, capped at the cost of production or €1.5m, whichever is the lower amount.
If the federal subsidy funding is less than 50% of the total amount of all public subsidies, the FFA will only pay up to 50% of the recognised income loss, capped at 50% of the cost of production or €750,000, whichever is the lower amount.
Payments from the FFA may be cumulated with comparable measures administered by the federal states so long as the total of €1.5m compensation is not exceeded.
In addition, for a qualifying contingency, the production company making the claim will be required to make a contribution of 5% of the eligible income loss, equivalent to at least €10,000.
A second contingency fund with a volume of €48m was established by 12 federal states to focus on TV productions commissioned from production companies based in their respective regions by public or private broadcasters or a streaming services in the genres of fiction, show entertainment, documentary and animation.
It follows an announcement that week that the German Motion Picture Fund (GMPF) has doubled its annual funding budget for 2021 to €30m ($35.2m) in a bid to attract more international film and high-end TV shoots to Germany.