North Charleston vying for more tv and film projects

North Charleston vying for more tv and movie projects
Published: Jul. 7, 2014 at 9:15 PM EDT
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NORTH CHARLESTON (WCSC) - In an effort to bring more jobs and revenue to North Charleston, city leaders are planning a trip to Hollywood. They're going to meet with network television executives and movie producers to pitch their city for future projects.

"North Charleston has a lot to offer," said Amy Heath, Director of Tourism for the City of North Charleston. "We love the film industry and we want [them] to film in the city of North Charleston."

Heath hopes to use their recent role on the new CBS show Reckless to entice more projects into their city limits. Several shots of the Riverfront Park can be spotted in the second episode of the show. And that's not all - CBS made a big investment in North Charleston while filming Reckless. Production took an old manufacturing plant and transformed it into a massive sound stage. The building has 75,000 square feet of sound proof sets, as well as offices the art department used.

"The amount of dollars that are spent in North Charleston - whether its through hotels, shopping, restaurants - the economic impact is huge," said Heath.

Heath says the Old Village area, around Park Circle, and the Riverfront Park have been a big hit for other filming projects. Interest is also stretching further north into neighborhoods like Westscott.

When she goes to Hollywood in the Fall, Heath said she's not just trying to sell North Charleston for it's visual appeal, but also because their city makes sense from a business perspective.

"Incentives, no film permits and a city and a mayor that is willing to work 100 percent with the film industry is going to be the big push," said Heath.

Heath says they don't charge production companies a dollar to film in their city.

North Charleston's already got a leg up on cities in North Carolina and Georgia because of South Caorlina's competitive incentives package for the film industry. Once they meet certain criteria, Production companies receive rebates for employee salaries, supplier and rental expenses. They also can be exempt from sales tax.

Production companies can receive rebates of up to 30 percent if they're employing South Carolina residents, and use local rental and supplier companies. South Carolina also pays their rebates quick, within 30 days, and in cash. Heath says some other states can take years to fork over their rebates.

"There is a lot more interest in North Charleston," said Heath. "Folks are realizing that we're a great place to live, work, play and film!"

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