Veteran movie producer Chu Chen-on has urged the Hong Kong government to use part of the Film Development Fund to subsidize foreign movie makers filming in the city, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Friday.
Chu, executive producer at October Pictures Ltd., had arranged the production crew for Hollywood blockbuster “Transformers: Age of Extinction”, which shot some of its scenes in Hong Kong.
The team is said to have spent millions of dollars during its nine-day stay in the city, creating over 200 temporary jobs during the movie shoot.
Such foreign movie filming activities can enhance vocational training and exchanges of production techniques and experience, on top of promoting Hong Kong to the world and bringing in tourism revenues over the longer term, said Chu.
South Korea, Malaysia and Canada all have various schemes to attract foreign filmmakers. The initiatives include up to 30 percent reimbursement of expenses in South Korea and a 16 percent concessionary tax rate in Canada.
The Commerce and Economic Development Bureau, however, said subsidy is only one of many factors that filmmakers take into account in deciding on the locations for movie shoots. Things such as budget, equipment availability, border control and other supportive measures also play a part, it said.
Hong Kong draws about 140 production teams from abroad on average each year, the bureau said, noting that 115 such teams came to the city last year.
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