Series producer and state government reach agreement over tax credits
Breathe easy, Maryland; Frank Underwood is sticking around.
The Netflix drama “House of Cards” will continue to film in Maryland, following an intense showdown over tax incentives between the state's government and the show's production company, Media Rights Capital.
Maryland governor Martin O'Malley announced in a blog post Friday that the third season of “House of Cards” will film in Maryland, after negotiations between MRC. According to O'Malley, the agreement calls for $11.5 million in tax credits in 2014, “which provides less than the production qualified for, but enough to keep the hit franchise in Maryland.”
“Spoiler alert: we're going to keep the 3700 jobs and more than 100 million dollars of economic activity and investment that House of Cards generates right here in Maryland,” O'Malley said. “Media Rights Capital has been a great supporter of the people and entertainment community in Maryland and we couldn't be happier to continue our partnership.”
The drama began when Media Rights Capital Vice President Charlie Goldstein sent a letter to O'Malley, saying that the production is “required to look at other states in which to film on the off chance that the legislation does not pass, or does not cover the amount of tax credits for which we would qualify.” (The series received $11 million in tax breaks for the first season and up to $15 million for the second season.)
The state's House of Delegates responded by adopting budget language that would allow the state to seize MRC's property if it stopped filming in Maryland.
Luckily, an accord was reached.
The money for “House of Cards” will come from a combination of the 2014 Film Production Tax Credit program and a general assembly authorization of $7.5 million in grants in the budget for fiscal year 2015.
“House of Cards is the gift that keeps on giving, having injected hundreds of millions of dollars into the local economy, while also helping to provide thousands of jobs to our Maryland community,” Asif Satchu, co-CEO of MRC said. “We are very grateful to both Governor O'Malley for his tireless efforts to help keep jobs in Maryland and the leadership of the General Assembly for their continued advocacy and support.”
The third season of the series will begin filming “over the next several months.”