BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Over the last two decades, more than 1,200 productions have been created in Louisiana, according to the past President of the Louisiana Film and Entertainment Association Patrick Mulhearn.

“We are extremely proud of where the industry has been and where we are going,” said Mulhearn.

Mulhearn also served as the Executive Director of Celtic Studios and the Celtic Media Centre from 2009 until 2017 and supported $1 billion in total production to Baton Rouge. He is currently the Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives at Louisiana Economic Development.

A lot of the movie business in the state is attributed to the Film Tax Credit, which was created to incentivize the industry. It breaks down to 25% credit across the board, an additional 10% if it was created by a Louisiana screenwriter, and 15% for any local hires with a cap credit at 40%.

JMC Analyst John Couvillon said his team was tasked to see how the people of Louisiana feel about the breaks.

“Because the tax incentives periodically are up for debate in the legislature, the film and entertainment association commissioned JMC polling,” Couvillon said.

The poll shows significant support for the incentives including these four questions below.

  • Do you favor or oppose tax incentives to help develop businesses in Louisiana?
  • Favor 69%
  • Oppose 12%
  • Undecided 19%
  • When creating tax incentives, which industry in Louisiana do you believe is most deserving of them?
  • Healthcare 25%
  • Agriculture/seafood 21%
  • Film industry 14%
  • Would you be more or less likely to watch a movie if it was filmed in Louisiana?
  • More Likely 78%
  • Less Likely 2%
  • Makes No Difference 21% 26%
  • Would you agree or disagree that productions and films shot in Louisiana benefit the state?
  • Agree 87%
  • Disagree 4%
  • Unsure 9%

“Number one, the film industry in the state is held in very high esteem,” said Couvillon. “Number two is that there is broad and strong public support for the tax incentives that have been used to help develop this industry.”

“I’m not surprised at all it just touches so many people, you know when you’re talking about 10,000 direct jobs and you start thinking about their families, their households, and the places where they shop,” Mulhearn said.

“The hope is that they would extend that sunset. I think all that we are asking for is the status quo and give us an extension, let’s keep going,” said Mulhearn.

“So considering that the film industry is a relative newcomer to the state, I think that’s pretty impressive that they are basically welcomed by the Louisianans,” Couvillon said.

The film tax credit expires in 2025, but many are hoping it will continue.