California Lures More Shows to State, Saying It Can Handle Covid

The California Film Commission lured two TV shows to the state, citing tax credits and efforts to maintain production safety even during a resurgence in coronavirus cases.

Amazon Prime Video’s “Hunters” and Disney+’s “The Right Stuff” are claiming an estimated $32.5 million in tax credits made available under the state’s incentive program, the commission said in a statement Wednesday.

Though film and TV production is recovering slowly from the pandemic, California has sought to burnish its role as an entertainment capital. The commissionpreviously announced in August that two other series were relocating to the state.

“These kinds of projects are a primary target for our tax-credit program because they bring high-quality jobs and significant in-state spending to California,” the commission’s executive director, Colleen Bell, said in an interview.

Getting production back to pre-pandemic levels is still a distant goal, especially as the virus continues to rage across the state. Earlier this week, California reinstituted bans on many indoor businesses and its governor warned of a possible curfew.

Between July and September, production was down in Los Angeles by about 54% from the prior year, according to FilmLA. But the TV-show relocations signal that studios are betting the state will bounce back.

California began the third iteration of its tax-credit program in July. That version has measures designed to help underserved communities and improves reporting requirements for cast and crew diversity.

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