Filmmaking Industry Growing in SC

Film Industry in South Carolina

Thanks to legislation by South Carolina lawmakers, the state’s film industry is growing. On a recent podcast, director of the South Carolina Film Commission Tom Clark talked about the growth. Recently, South Carolina legislators passed a law making what was originally supposed to be a temporary proviso permanent, in hopes of making South Carolina a more tempting place for filmmakers to do business. The proviso originally promised filmmakers 15% back on wages, and then increased to 20-25% (30% on suppliers) in 2006. Clark stated that filmmakers just “needed a little certainty” on their investments, and making the proviso permanent in South Carolina should help to provide filmmakers with just that. The Carolina Film Alliance (CFA) says that making the proviso permanent “will allow the Film Office to use unused monies from the previous year for film projects,” and “free up significant monies from one year to the next…there will be significantly more money that can now be used for more films, which will result in more film production jobs here in South Carolina.” 

The Division of Research at the University of South Carolina’s Moore School of Business discusses a little bit about the “incentives” for filmmakers to do business in South Carolina, saying, “The incentives considered are wage and local supplier rebates paid by the South Carolina Film Commission. The rebates are designed to make South Carolina competitive and attract production to the state.” When discussing the benefits of filmmaking in South Carolina, the Moore School of Business says, “The most important measure of this industry’s contribution to the state’s economy is the new income generated for local residents.” Jobs are also created when filmmakers do business in South Carolina, as they need local film crews. If filmmakers have to bring their own film crews, it costs them a significant amount of money to cover accommodations for everyone. TV shows are particularly good moneymakers, as they create between 170 and 175 long-term jobs (6 months at a time) and pay between $3.5 million to $5 million per episode.