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‘House of Cards’ drama: Will tax credits keep show’s filming in Maryland?

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wtopstaff | November 15, 2014 1:48 am

WASHINGTON — Netflix’s political drama series “House of Cards” is experiencing some drama of its own in Maryland as lawmakers work to make tax credits for the show worth its while.

In an effort to keep the Emmy-winning show filming in Maryland, the state Senate voted to increase the tax credit for production companies from $7.5 million to $18 million.

The vote came after production company Media Rights Capital pushed back its filming schedule for the show’s third season to see if Maryland lawmakers would boost credits for film and television projects.

The show, which stars Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright, is set in D.C., but much of it is filmed in Maryland.

The Washington Post reports that although the show is receiving million of dollars in tax credits, it is also employing Maryland residents, impacting businesses, drawing attention to the state and boosting the economy.

In season 1 of “House of Cards,” the production company received a final tax credit of more than $11.6 million, according to The Washington Post. The money came from the state’s budget for fiscal years 2012, 2013 and 2014. The show’s expenses in the Old Line state were more than $63.6 million.

Season 2’s tax credit could bring the production company up to $15 million, the Post reports. The show spent more than $55.5 million in Maryland. The money for that tax credit will come from the fiscal year 2014 budget.

If Season 3 is filmed in Maryland, it could have about the same impact as Season 2, according to the Post. The show would qualify for up to $15 million in tax credits, but Maryland can only guarantee $4 million so far.

For each season of the show, almost 2,000 businesses benefited from the filming in the state and thousands of Maryland residents served as cast, crew and extras, according to the Post.

Virginia will soon have to deal with a similar demand as it prepares for production of a new movie “The Rangers,” which will begin filming later this year. The fantasy movie will shoot in Northern Virginia and employ local actors and crew members, according to a news release.

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