The House gave preliminary approval in March to a bill that offers tax breaks to companies that film movies, TV shows and commercials in the state. The bill would give production companies a 10 percent tax credit on the first $50,000 of compensation paid to each Montana resident employed in a state-certified production. It also would provide a 7 percent credit on total production expenditures in the state. Total tax credits could not exceed $1 million for each project.
Supporters note that Montana has lost film business to Canadian provinces and other states and needs to offer tax incentives to lure film productions back to the Big Sky state. Montana-made films, such as "A River Runs Though It" in 1992, support local businesses and help boost tourism by advertising the state's beauty around the world.