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Budget 2015 keeps film and television jobs rolling in Alberta

The Alberta government is investing in the future of Alberta’s film, television, music, and publishing industries through Budget 2015, helping further stabilize the sector and keep productions in the province. 

Alberta Media Fund

The set of the 2013 production Klondike, filmed at the CL Ranch Western Town and Backlot West of Calgary

To meet current commitments and further grow the sector, the budget includes an increase of $11 million for the Alberta Media Fund, bringing the total commitment this year to $36.8 million.

“The success of Alberta’s cultural industries sector, particularly our film and television industry, is an important piece in our move toward a more diversified, sustainable economy. This investment will allow us to continue to grow Alberta’s production industry, support home-grown productions, and enhance the appeal of our province as a destination for international filmmakers. We have only begun to tap into the incredible potential of this industry.”

David Eggen, Minister of Culture and Tourism

Over the last five years, film and television projects have generated more than $400 million in spending in the province, with more than 3,000 Albertans employed in the industry. Over the last ten years Alberta shot films have won more Oscars, Golden Globes and Emmy awards than any other province.

The award-winning television series Heartland, has spent approximately $150 million in the province over nine seasons, employs over 100 Albertans and is sold in 120 countries, showcasing the province around the world. The series partners with the Town of High River, now known as the Home of Heartland, and is an active member of the community through support like flood recovery efforts.

“The Alberta Media Fund is an essential touchstone in telling Alberta film and TV stories and attracting movies and series to the province. It triggers significant out-of-province investment, creates skilled jobs for thousands of Albertans and injects revenue into communities across the province. It ensures that shows like Heartland can be made here by Albertans, for Alberta, Canada and the world.”

Tom Cox, Managing Director, SEVEN24 Films

“The motion picture industry in Alberta is seeing a surge in production volumes which translates to significant job growth for Alberta’s Artists, Technicians and Craftspeople. We are very encouraged by the fact that Alberta’s NDP government has identified our industry as a sensible place to grow and diversify the economy.”

Damian Petti, President, International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees Local 212

The Alberta Media Fund provides support to organizations and individuals involved in the cultural industries, which include screen-based media production, book and magazine publishing and sound recordings. The media fund is made up of five major grant streams, including the Alberta Production Grant and the Project Script Development Grant.

Facts about Alberta’s cultural industries

  • Every dollar invested through the Alberta Production Grant supports approximately $6 in economic activity.
  • To date in 2015-16, 39 screen-based projects have resulted in over $103 million being spent in Alberta.
  • Between 2014 and 2015, film and television productions have been shot in 14 communities across Alberta, including Calgary, Stony Plain, Morley and the Tsuu T’ina Nation. Productions include feature films The Revenant and 40 Below and Falling, and television shows Blackstone, Hell on Wheels, Fargo and Ice Road Racer.
  • The industry is labour-intensive and environmentally-friendly, with the majority of production costs going directly into jobs and services in the community.
  • It generates direct employment opportunities for artists, writers, camera crews, producers, actors, graphic designers, wardrobe designers, editors, photographers, and others across the province. Many more receive economic benefits such as hotels, caterers, and hardware and lumber stores.
  • The industry supports rural economic development, promotes tourism, and brings diversity to Alberta’s economy.

Through Budget 2015, Alberta Culture and Tourism is investing $329.6 million, including operating and capital spending, in the cultural, social and economic well-being of communities across the province. The ministry continues to work with stakeholders to develop and showcase our resources for the benefit of Alberta’s families, communities, visitors, and investors.

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