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The new Italian tax credit will be available “before the summer”, with a focus on local talent

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The new Italian tax credit will be available “before the summer”, with a focus on local talent

Italy’s reformed audiovisual tax credit will be open for applications by “the start of summer”, Lucia Borgonzoni, undersecretary of state to the ministry of culture, has told Screen.

Borgonzoni said the changes would focus the tax credit on productions that shot in Italy, with Italian talent, did not overuse AI, and were aimed at a theatrical release. Since the beginning of the year, local and international producers have waited for the government’s guidelines and forms to apply for Italy’s tax credits for 2024. The tax credit, with a headline rate at 40%, has led both to a boom of production in the country by homegrown filmmakers as well as international movies. However last year the government announced it was working on reforms to the tax credit

to raise the quality level” of projects securing funding amid particular concern that many Italian films were being produced but not seen by audiences.Source: AVP SummitLucia Borgonzoni

Lucia Borgonzoni

But the reforms have taken time and the delay has caused many Italian and international productions to postpone principal photography or to abandon plans to shoot in Italy altogether. In April, 21 unions joined leading figures from the Italian cinema industry to voice their concerns about challenges in accessing public funding that have brought film and high-end TV production to a standstill in the country.

Drafting complete

Borgonzoni, who is in charge of the cinema department at Italy’s ministry of culture, stressed the tax credit changes were part of a wider overhaul of Italian cinema funding, and that her ministry had finished drafting the reform.

“The decrees are all ready. They are waiting on the final approval from the ministry for finance. She said that the reforms will be completed “before the summer”.

Borgonzoni stated that the changes are not intended to reduce the money available for the tax credit but rather to “fix some of the anomalies”. The tax credit will also offer its more generous 40% rate to films that hire above the line Italian talent.

Italian films accessing the tax credit will also have to be released in theatres for a set period of time, following concerns that few were securing meaningful distribution. For Italian productions, the reformed tax will also cap the salaries of key talent to ensure the state is not subsidising high levels of pay; even so, the cap stands at a relatively generous EUR650,000 pay for a filmmaker.

Borgonzoni also said the reform of cinema funding would see the creation of a new EUR52m fund for film productions and series which tell Italian stories with international breadth and scope. “We want to push Italian producers to try and tell stories…about

the Guccis or Ferraris, maybe making co-productions but where the Italians are in there.”

2023 feature

Ferrari

was directed by US director Michael Mann and written by Troy Kennedy Martin, while 2021’s [subjects like]House Of Gucci

was directed by the UK’s Ridley Scott. Both starred US actor Adam Driver.“We would like to have these stories being told with the Italian initiative and participation,” said Borgonzoni.Which films are in the running for the 2024 Venice Film Festival?

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