In the heart of the Empire State, where ambition meets innovation on every street corner, the New York Film Office stands as a hub for creatives and visionaries. Here, amidst the storied landscapes that have birthed countless cinematic legends, New York isn't just a backdrop; it's a character, vibrant and teeming with stories waiting to be told.

In this article, we’ll explore the central role of the New York Film Office in cementing a robust film and TV production industry in the Empire State.

The New York Film Office opens doors for filmmakers to weave their narratives into the fabric of a state as dynamic and diverse as its people, promising a partnership where cinematic dreams soar on the wings of New York's indomitable spirit.

Get to know the New York Film Office

Established as part of the Empire State Development agency, the New York Film Office serves as a pivotal resource for production companies, offering detailed information on filming locations, logistical support, and essential services that streamline the production process in New York State.

Officially known as the New York State’s Governor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Development, the New York Film Office also administers the New York State film tax credit program.

Ways the New York Film Office supports filmmakers

The office facilitates a variety of services including location scouting assistance, navigating state regulations and permits, and connecting filmmakers with local talent and qualified production facilities, or QPFs.

Deep Dive Into NY Film Office - Wrapbook - New York City
New York, the city that never sleeps. A beacon for filmmakers.

Their commitment to making film production seamless is evident through their comprehensive support system designed to cater to the needs of both independent filmmakers and major production companies.

Programs and funding offered by the New York Film Office

The New York Film Office offers various programs and funding to support film and television production within the state. This includes a competitive film tax credit program designed to attract and retain film production activities in New York, providing significant financial incentives.

Additionally, the office facilitates access to locations, permits, and local production resources, aiming to bolster the state's economy by encouraging job creation in the entertainment sector.

Let’s dive into everything the New York Film Office can offer aspiring and experienced filmmakers.

Incentive programs

A key aspect of the New York Film Office's appeal is its competitive film tax credit program, offering significant incentives to productions that choose to film in New York.

New York currently offers a 30%–40% fully refundable tax credit to feature films, television series, and TV movies and miniseries. For fiscal year 2024, New York State has $700,000,000 allocated for the program.

In addition, New York offers a 20% fully refundable tax credit for commercial productions. Currently, the New York commercial tax credit program has an annual funding cap of $7,000,000. Commercials filmed upstate must meet a minimum spend requirement of $100,000 and commercials produced downstate must have a minimum spend of at least $500,000.

New York also has a 30%–45% fully refundable post production film tax credit. Productions shot outside of NY can still take advantage of the post production credit. By meeting minimum facility and state requirements, a post production only project can earn 30% base, plus two applicable bonuses for a possible total credit of 45% on post.

And, as the newest entry into New York’s competitive production incentive offerings, the Empire State now offers a 25%–35% fully refundable digital gaming tax credit. The digital gaming tax credit has $5,000,000 in funding allocated for the 2024 fiscal year and productions must have a minimum spend of at least $100,000 to qualify.

Finally, productions filming in the greater Syracuse area (Onondaga County) can take advantage of a 25% film tax rebate provided they conduct 70% of principal production in Onondaga County, meet the program’s minimum spend requirements, and meet the rebates other qualifying requirements.

For more on New York film tax incentives, check out Wrapbook’s handy guide to the tax credit program. And for answers to all your film tax incentives questions, visit Wrapbook’s Production Incentive Center to explore film tax incentives in other states and test drive Wrapbook’s interactive incentives finder.

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Educational and professional development

The New York Film Office offers educational and professional development opportunities through various initiatives aimed at supporting talent within the state. These programs may include workshops, seminars, and partnerships with educational institutions to provide hands-on experience and learning opportunities in the film and television industry.

One such program is the New York Entertainment Workforce Diversity Grant Program, which provides financial assistance in the form of grants for job creation and training programs. 

The New York Entertainment Workforce Diversity Grant supports efforts to recruit, hire, promote, develop and train a diverse and inclusive workforce for the motion picture and TV production industries in New York State.

The New York Film Office also holds an annual summit called the New York State Multicultural Creativity Virtual Summit, purposed to encourage broader diversity and inclusion within the state’s entertainment industry.

The annual summit is co-hosted with the Motion Picture Association (MPA) and Urbanworld as a virtual forum that enables diverse content creators to connect with entertainment industry leaders for career advice and guidance.

These efforts are designed to nurture and develop the next generation of filmmakers and industry professionals, ensuring that New York remains at the forefront of entertainment innovation.

Location scouting and permits

The New York Film Office offers comprehensive support for location scouting and permit acquisition to facilitate filming across the state. This includes an extensive database of locations suitable for various types of productions and a streamlined process for obtaining necessary permits for filming on public lands and in urban areas.

For more information about securing film permits in New York City, check out Wrapbook’s handy Producer’s Guide.

Deep Dive Into NY Film Office - Wrapbook - Camera
Special effects? City-owned locations? You’ll probably need a New York City film permit.

These services are designed to help filmmakers navigate the logistical aspects of production, ensuring a smooth and efficient filming process in New York's diverse settings.

Safety and sustainability

The New York Film Office promotes safety and environmental sustainability on film sets through various initiatives. This includes adherence to safety protocols to protect cast and crew, as well as guidelines for sustainable practices to minimize environmental impact.

These efforts aim to ensure that film productions are not only safe but also environmentally responsible, reflecting New York's commitment to both the wellbeing of its people and the preservation of its natural and urban environments.

How to connect with the New York Film Office

For filmmakers looking to take advantage of the resources offered by the New York State’s Governor’s Office of Motion Picture and Television Development, contacting them is made easy through their official website, email channels, and social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter/X, Instagram, and YouTube.

These avenues provide direct access to the assistance and information needed to navigate the production landscape in New York.

Wrapping up

New York's film incentives and the robust support from the New York Film Office provide a fertile ground for filmmakers to bring their visions to life.

For those interested in exploring more about what New York has to offer, diving into the specifics of these incentives and connecting with the film office can open the door to vast opportunities in the Empire State.

For more information on the New York State film tax credit, check out Wrapbook’s helpful guide to the program. And visit Wrapbook’s Production Incentive Center for answers to all of your film tax incentive questions!

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Last Updated 
May 1, 2024


At Wrapbook, we pride ourselves on providing outstanding free resources to producers and their crews, but this post is for informational purposes only as of the date above. The content on our website is not intended to provide and should not be relied on for legal, accounting, or tax advice.  You should consult with your own legal, accounting, or tax advisors to determine how this general information may apply to your specific circumstances.

About the author
Tom Waddick

Tom is a filmmaker, producer, and marketing specialist based in Los Angeles.

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