What do movies like The Natural, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2, Nightmare Alley, A Man Called Otto, Best Friends, and A Quiet Place II have in common? Besides not starring yours truly, they were all filmed in Buffalo Niagara. Our region’s accessibility, diversity, and world class architecture has made Western New York an attractive movie backdrop for a long time - just ask the Buffalo Niagara Film Office.
Burgeoning support industries help build on our previous successes - local film studios, digital rendering and effects companies, Villa Maria College, the University at Buffalo’s Center for Computational Research (one of the nation's leading supercomputing centers), and RIT’s new MAGIC Spell Studios and may others work as an ensemble to grow and evolve the Film and Gaming ecosystem in WNY.
Why Buffalo Niagara for the Film & Gaming Industry?
Our strategic location on the Canadian border puts us 2 hours from Toronto and 6 hours from New York. Need more convincing? How about our region’s growing collaborative ecosystem, geographic diversity and accessibility for film, a robust talent pipeline, widespread 5G deployment, a low-cost business climate and lucrative state incentives including:
Film & TV Production Tax Credit
Eligible productions may apply for a tax credit of 30% of qualified production expenses. Productions with a minimum budget of $500,000 may receive an additional 10% credit on qualified labor expenses, including qualified above-the-line wages. Learn More >
Post-Production Tax Credit
Eligible productions may also be eligible for a fully refundable tax credit of 30% of qualified post-production expenses. An additional 5% credit may be available in the Post-Production Program for costs incurred in Upstate NY and projects with budgets over $500,000 can receive an additional 10% credit on qualified labor expenses. Learn More >
Digital Game Development Tax Credit
Qualified WNY digital game development studios can apply to receive tax credits of 35%. To be eligible, the entity must be engaged in a qualified digital gaming media production and must have a minimum of $100,000 total production costs. Qualified production costs must be at least 75% of all production costs. Learn More>
New York State Entertainment Workforce Diversity Grant
This program provides financial assistance in the form of grants for job creation and training programs that support efforts to recruit, retain and train a diverse and inclusive workforce for the motion picture and television production and post-production industries. Grants ranging from $25,000 to $500,000 can be awarded to eligible applicants. Learn More >
Since 2011, over 2,300 applications have been accepted into the New York State Film Tax Credit Program for both production and post-production projects; that success has only reinforced the Empire State’s commitment to the industry.
Buffalo Niagara has long been at the forefront of innovation and creativity. Our region is well-prepared to capture the impending opportunity in Film and Gaming and our team at Invest Buffalo Niagara welcomes you to leverage our experience and project management assistance.