Press Release URL: http://veritefilms.ca/#!,p,news
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Regina and Toronto (June 27, 2012) – After 15 years of producing over 250 episodes of award-winning primetime television in Regina, Saskatchewan, including the smash hit comedy series CORNER GAS, Vérité Films will be moving its Regina head office to Toronto effective June 30. The move is due to the elimination of Saskatchewan’s refundable film employment tax credit.
“Vérité will maintain a satellite office with one production executive in Regina with the hope that things will improve in the province,” says Virginia Thompson, president of Vérité Films. “Regina will always be in our hearts. We’ve raised three kids, built our home and our company here. But there is no longer a viable way to finance our projects in Saskatchewan. Our future is in Toronto now, where our projects can be financed. That said, should a new program be put in place that makes it possible for us to film in Saskatchewan, we would love to bring production back to the province.”
Spanning the 15 years since the refundable tax credit was introduced, Vérité Films created and produced four hit television series for children, youth and family audiences - including CORNER GAS, RENEGADEPRESS.COM, INCREDIBLE STORY STUDIO and INSECURITY - bringing over $100M in production to the province of Saskatchewan. The decision affects on average 600 highly skilled technicians, artists, crew, digital media and support staff hired during times of production. Vérité also ran creative writing and acting programs for young artists, trained production crews and took an active interest in developing the industry. CORNER GAS and its cast and crew helped to raise over $500,000 for a variety of charities in Saskatchewan. The CORNER GAS film set, which is now a gift shop in Rouleau, Saskatchewan, is one of the province’s most popular tourist destinations.
Vérité Films’ announcement follows that of Regina-based Partners in Motion, an award-winning production company who made a similar announcement this month.
About Vérité Films
Vérité Films was founded by producer Virginia Thompson and writer/director Robert de Lint. The Gemini Award-winning company has developed a reputation for creating and producing TV that resonates with audiences in Canada and around the world.
Vérité Films opened their head office in Regina in 1997. In 2009, the company opened a second satellite office in Toronto focusing on development. To date, all series television has been filmed in the province of Saskatchewan. With Saskatchewan’s recent decision to eliminate the refundable tax credit, the company will consolidate and move its headquarters and future production to Toronto.
Vérité produced the smash hit narrative comedy series CORNER GAS (107 x 30 minutes) and website for CTV with Brent Butt and David Storey’s 335 Productions. Created by Brent Butt, CORNER GAS was Canada’s #1 rated scripted series from 2004 to 2009. Airing in 26 countries, it was nominated for an International Emmy and won seven Geminis (including Best Series and Best Interactive), nine Canadian Comedy Awards, four Directors Guild Awards and four Writers Guild Awards. Vérité went on to create and produce two seasons of the spy comedy series INSECURITY (23 x 30 minutes) and website for CBC from 2011 to 2012 with Kevin White of Company Name Here Productions. Vérité also created and produced the youth dramatic series and e-zine RENEGADEPRESS.COM (52 x 30 minutes) from 2004 to 2008 for Global and APTN and the hit children’s series INCREDIBLE STORY STUDIO (65 x 30 minutes) from 1997 to 2002 for YTV and Disney International. Both series aired in over 100 countries, won numerous Gemini Awards and were each nominated for The Prix Jeunesse. Vérité currently has a number of projects in development.
About the refundable tax credit, SFETC (Saskatchewan Film Employment Tax Credit)
Despite the province’s strong economic performance and an industry that has done well for itself over the past decade – hosting two of the country’s biggest television hits CORNER GAS and LITTLE MOSQUE ON THE PRAIRIE – the Saskatchewan government has announced that it will terminate its 15-year-old, refundable film tax credit, effective June 30, 2012. The Saskatchewan government has introduced a scaled-down, non-refundable tax credit. The new program is not a workable option for most productions because banks will not recognize it as collateral for production loans and because it is not competitive with any other Canadian province.
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Media Contact: Margaret Sirotich for Vérité Films, firstname.lastname@example.org, 647-242-1746