Thousands rally for film incentives - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Thousands rally for film incentives

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – Thousands took to the streets to fight for the film industry.

Film industry workers, politicians, and other concerned citizens protested together on Saturday at Riverfront Park in downtown Wilmington. Some famous faces were also in the crowd.

They're rallying against a plan to make changes to the state's film incentive plan.

Earlier this week, Reps. Rick Catlin (R-New Hanover) and Chris Millis (R-Pender) introduced House Bill 994 which would eliminate film tax credits altogether.

To read more about the proposal, click here.

Critics say the bill would gut the film industry because the changes would give companies credits instead of cash back.

Lee Hill attended the rally on Saturday even though she doesn't work in the film industry.  Hill says if the bill passes, production companies would target other areas.  "They would go to South Carolina, Louisiana, or Georgia," said Hill.  "They would take all this extra income out of our area."

Many political figures from across the state were also on hand including Mayor Bill Saffo.

"Here we have an industry that's thriving, it's growing and making world class films," said Saffo.  "Why would we want to take that away?  It's crazy."

Protestors plan to keep fighting this bill as it makes it way through legislation.

Meanwhile, Saffo says the City of Wilmington plans to pass a resolution in support of the current film incentives program.  County Commissioner Beth Dawson says the county plans to do the same.

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