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  1. #1

    Default Hallmark pulls production from Colorado

    From The Denver Post:


    The score is Vancouver 1, Colorado 0.
    The Hallmark series “When Calls the Heart,” an $8 million project reported to be a great coup for the local production community, will no longer be shot locally.
    Chalk it up to better tax breaks in Canada for film and television production.
    “Hallmark Channel has decided to move portions of the production of its series, “When Calls the Heart,” to Vancouver, British Columbia,” a spokeswoman for the channel said. “With the very best of intentions to tape the series in its entirety in Colorado, additional episodes not eligible for tax breaks and a number of environmental concerns related to building a set from the ground up became cost prohibitive and would have resulted in the postponement of production indefinitely.
    “We continue to look for ways to keep a portion of the filming in the state and expect to have a long and strong partnership with Colorado,” Hallmark said.
    Finding workable sites has been a problem. Last month a deal was reportedly near for a third site near Telluride, but that fell through.
    Donald Zuckerman, director of the Colorado Office Of Film, Television and Media, said the deal ran aground in the last couple of weeks. “We were kind of victims of their success,” he said.
    When the producers first approached the office, they had an order for six episodes. That grew to 10, then 13. “At the same time their cost per show went up,” Zuckerman said. “We had set aside $2.7 million” as an incentive toward the $13.5 million expenditure, but “their total budget escalated to the point where they were going to have a substantial loss compared to going someplace else that didn’t have a cap.”
    In Canada, there is no cap on incentives.
    Zuckerman is resolute: “We’ve been turning away people (since reaching the cap), now we’re open for business.”


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