Movies

Hollywood in a state of emergency over 'runaway production'

Aug. 27, 2013 at 9:32 AM ET

Hooray for Hollywood! Well, not so much these days. Filmmakers have started making more and more movies outside the classic Hollywood/Los Angeles area, and it's making local businesses and politicians very nervous — so much so that Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has declared a state of emergency over what's called "runaway production."

As Jason Kennedy reported on TODAY Tuesday, the increasing cost of shooting films has led productions to seek less expensive places to shoot elsewhere. Over the past 10 years, runaway production has led to a 9 percent drop in productions filming in California, a loss of 90,000 jobs and $3 billion in wages. Movies like "The Hunger Games" trilogy film in North Carolina and Georgia, while "Battle Los Angeles" shot largely in Louisiana.

"We've lost the blockbuster films," said Garcetti. "They don't film here any more. Tax credits around the world and around the country have taken them away."

Garcetti's solution? Make Hollywood the go-to place again for film and TV makers by removing limits on tax incentives that drive away production, and hire a "Film Czar" in the fall.

Meanwhile, the production keeps leaking away. Noted Variety's Ted Johnson, "The more production that occurs in other cities on a regular basis, the bigger the talent pool is going to be. L.A. risks not just losing that production on a temporary basis, but also permanently."

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