Manitoba: A Skilled Production Community Backed by Generous Tax Credits

Manitoba enjoys a highly-skilled production community that is backed by Canada’s most generous tax credit system.

Manitoba’s advantages came to our attention when we worked with the province’s leading non-fiction producers in the lead up to Real Screen 2013.

Here is a practical user’s guide to Manitoba’s industry – its structures, benefits and talent.

Danishka-Esterhazy---photo-credit-Rebecca-Sandulak

KEY AGENCIES / ORGANIZATIONS

Manitoba Film and Music

  • Manitoba Film and Music is the provincial agency in Manitoba, Canada that is responsible for Film Commission duties, provincial tax credit incentives and an equity fund.
  • It takes the lead in promoting Manitoba as a versatile and affordable filming location. Read more here.

On Screen Manitoba

  • On Screen Manitoba is the provincial non-profit member-driven organization that represents the 1200 odd media production industry professionals of Manitoba, Canada.
  • Its members include writers, directors, producers, unions, guilds, training organizations, film festivals and other industry stakeholders.
  • On Screen Manitoba undertakes a number of market and business development initiatives to provide the Manitoba production industry with opportunity to connect with national and international industry leaders and decision-makers. Read more here.

INDUSTRY PROFILE

Talent & Scale

  • Manitoba has a vibrant creative sector that includes many talented writers, directors and producers who contribute to the whole of the Canadian film, television and interactive media production sector.
  • For 25+ years, Manitoba’s film and television production industry has developed experienced producers, a dependable infrastructure and award-winning talent.
  • Manitoba has over 20 active production companies that create original content and that co-produce with partners from around the world.
  • These production companies are led by seasoned service producers who have worked with and for international studios such as Fox, Universal and MGM.
  • Reflecting Manitoba’s diverse population, content is produced in English, French and Aboriginal languages.
  • Open to new experiences, languages and cultures our production community welcomes the opportunity to work with co-producers from other countries.

Flexibility

  • Manitoba producers pride themselves on their capacity to work collaboratively with local and out-of-province partners to adapt rapidly to a changing media production environment.
  • An increasing number of Manitoba producers have experience developing and managing interactive and/or multiplatform projects whether in television, film or web-based production.
  • Manitoba has a well-established infrastructure that accommodates large or micro-budget projects with ease and flexibility.
  • The province’s 14 year-old tax credit is a stable production incentive with a proven track record and no annual cap.

International and Cross-Border Experience

  • From an international media production assurance company to financing and legal expertise, Manitoba production service suppliers are well versed in the challenges and opportunities of Canadian and international projects.
  • Manitoba production industry suppliers have decades of experience working with large international studios, as well as small Indie productions.
  • Combining a purpose built sound stage with adapted warehouses, Manitoba can comfortably accommodate multiple productions at any given time.
  • We also have post-production facilities with a Dolby certified recording studio.
  • Two dedicated film offices offer location scouting, permit and logistics support along with legendary financial incentives and problem solving at the speed of production.

Talent + Development

  • Manitoba’s local talent pool has won awards on both sides of the camera.
  • From writers, directors, actors and producers whose work is regularly showcased at major festivals such as TIFF, Berlin, Cannes, and Sundance to the talented keys that are sought after beyond our borders.
  • Manitoba is a strong production centre with excellent training and professional development opportunities for all industry players.
  • It is host province to Canada’s National Screen Institute, and boasts a thirty-year old artist-run film centre — The Winnipeg Film Group, post-secondary programs in both French and English, a burgeoning New Media sector and industry-driven training programs through Film Training Manitoba.

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MANITOBA PRODUCTION INCENTIVES

Manitoba offers three tax credits:

  • The film and video labour-based tax credit.
  • The film and video cost-of-production tax credit.
  • And the interactive digital media tax credit.

MANITOBA TAX CREDITS

Read more here.

Who Can Apply?

  • Applicants must:
    • have a permanent establishment (as defined in the Income Tax Act) in Manitoba,
    • be incorporated in Canada (either federally or provincially),
    • and must be a taxable Canadian corporation primarily carrying on a business that is a film or video production.
    • A minimum 25% of the corporation’s T4 Summary must be paid to eligible Manitoba employees for work performed in Manitoba (excluding docs).

Are There Content Requirements?

  • There are no Canada or Manitoba content requirements.

What Projects Are Eligible To Apply?

  • Eligible projects include fully financed television movies, documentaries, feature films, dramatic series, variety, multimedia, animation, children’s programming, music programming and informational series, as well as digital and CD-ROM production.

What about Co-Productions?

  • The Manitoba Labour-based Tax Credit and the Manitoba Cost-of-Production based Tax Credit were designed to encourage outside collaboration with non-Manitoba producers.

What about Copyright/Corporate Caps?

  • No copyright ownership is required and there are no corporate caps regarding the number of applications or the amount of tax credit available.

What if I Have to Film Outside Of Manitoba?

  • Recognizing that certain productions require shooting outside Manitoba, filming outside of the province is allowable within the spirit and intent of the Act;
  • Therefore, the labour-based tax credit travels with Manitoba crew but in the case of the cost-of-production tax credit only Manitoba expenditures will be eligible.

What about the Federal Tax Credit?

  • The Manitoba Cost-of-Salaries Tax Credit is compatible with the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit (CPTC) and the Film or Video Production Services Tax Credit (PSTC).
  • These are administered through the Canadian Audio-Visual Certification Office (CAVCO).
Tel: (888) 433-2200.

Manitoba Film and Video Labour-based Tax Credit (maximum 65%)

  • Base rate of 45%, calculated on Eligible Manitoba Labour Expenditures.
  • Manitoba Producer Bonus: Increase your tax credit to 50% by co-producing with a Manitoba producer.
  • Frequent Filming Bonus: Increase your tax credit to 55% on the third film shot within a 2-year period. Keep the 10% bonus on subsequent 
projects by maintaining production activity so that three films are shot within a 2-year period.
  • Rural and Northern Bonus: Increase your tax credit to 50% by shooting at least 50% of your Manitoba production days at least 35 km from Winnipeg’s center.
  • Combine your Incentives! Increase your tax credit to 65% by qualifying for the Frequent Filming Bonus, the Manitoba Producer Bonus, and the Rural and Northern Incentive!

Manitoba Cost-of-Production Tax Credit

  • The Manitoba Film & Video Production Cost-of-Production Tax Credit is the highest in Canada.
  • It provides production companies with a 30% fully refundable corporate income tax credit based on all eligible Manitoba expenditures including labour and deemed labour, if applicable.
  • Maximum: 30% on eligible Manitoba expenses.

Manitoba Interactive Digital Media Tax Credit (maximum 45% of eligible labour)

  • This tax credit is designed to support the development of interactive media content in Manitoba.
  • Application information is available here.

Manitoba Film and Music Support for Production

  • Manitoba Film and Music provides support to Manitoba production companies for development and production of film, television and web-based content.
  • Click here for further information.

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Manitoba Producers Attending Real Screen 2013

Attending with Peter Hamilton Consultants: