Nova Scotia

New funds for local television productions

Film Nova Scotia has teamed up with EastLink to fund local television productions in Nova Scotia.

Film Nova Scotia and EastLink have announced the creation of the annual Independent Production Fund.

Starting Sept. 23, Nova Scotia producers of dramatic television can apply for grants of up to $150,000. To be eligible, productions must have considerable Canadian content and be licensed for broadcast.

Ann MacKenzie, president and CEO of Film Nova Scotia, said keeping these funds local will increase Nova Scotia producers’ odds of obtaining financing.

"The process prior to now was that the funds were sent nationally," she said. "So there’s a much bigger pool to compete in nationally, whereas now the funds are going to be kept here in the local community, and only local producers will have access to it."

The money will fund up to 20 per cent of a project’s total budget, maxing out at $150,000 per applicant. EastLink's initial contribution to the fund is $1.3 million and it will further contribute a percentage of its revenue every year.

CEO Lee Bragg said EastLink, which provides telephone, cable and internet services, has a history of supporting Nova Scotia television production.

"Partnering with Film Nova Scotia to create a provincial independent production fund will allow us to continue to make meaningful investments back into the local economy and encourage more growth in Nova Scotia," he said.

EastLink and Film Nova Scotia both stressed the economic contribution of local television production, which they said contributes more than $100 million to the provincial economy each year.

"Investing in the television industry will increase production activity, which will generate more spending and great jobs for the economy," said MacKenzie.

Film Nova Scotia is a provincial Crown corporation supporting the audio-visual industry.