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High-end television a boost to the city

Date posted: 08.05.2014

Jack is back, and he's in London. After a four year hiatus, hit Fox television show 24 has returned to screens around the world with 24: Live Another Day. What prompted this mega show to come to London? The answer is a mix of talent, facilities, locations and the business of tax reliefs!

Since April last year, Film London has been active in attracting television and animation to the capital on the back of the new tax reliefs with additional funding from the Mayor of London.

And it's not just Jack Bauer in 24 that has come to the city. America's Sherlock Holmes played by Jonny Lee Miller in CBS show Elementary has shot an episode here, as has acclaimed HBO comedy Veep starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

Prestige television is also coming to London. American television network AMC - the brains and savvy behind landmark hits Breaking Bad and Mad Men - are in the city shooting a pilot of new show Knifeman, starring Tim Roth.

24: Impact in London

The economic impact of 24: Live Another Day on London is clear. Shooting 12 episodes for over six months, with a core crew of 130, supplemented by over 500 temporary crew and a UK cast of approx 150 plus thousands of extras, the show has a total production spend of approximately £37m.

But it's not just the immediate economic impact that is valuable, our cultural capital and visibility on screen are also important. As our city is increasingly visible, we find ourselves better represented as more productions take on new perspectives.

Kiefer Sutherland, the actor behind the show's star Jack Bauer, talks about showing London on screen in new ways: "I'm not running by Big Ben, I'm not taking cover in Westminster Abbey, they're going to see a kind of London that's more true to London."

High-end Television Tax Relief

The high-end television tax relief is a big reason why an increasing number of broadcast productions are finding London a favourable destination.

Television production companies can claim tax relief of up to 25% of qualifying expenditure for scripted television projects that meet a number of requirements, including that their minimum core expenditure is £1m. This means that the kind of television the country is attracting is of a large and impressive scope.

London Talent & Resources

While the tax relief makes London attractive on a financial level, the city would not be as booming with production were it not for the excellent set of talent and resources we have within our borders.

A thriving metropolis with a host of studios and crew, as well as locations ranging from recognisable landmarks through to hidden gems, the city is one of the world's most popular production centres.

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