WHITE PLAINS – Westchester County Executive Robert P. Astorino announced that Westchester received more than $30 million in revenue from the film and TV industry in 2016, almost doubling the amount from two years ago. The revenue comes from 532 on-location production days in Westchester this past year, a 67% increase since 2014.
“Westchester’s film and TV industry is booming,” said Astorino. “These numbers show the popularity of Westchester as a backdrop for movies, television shows and commercials, as well as the importance of the film and TV industry to our local economy.”
A biennial economic impact survey, conducted earlier this year by the Westchester County Tourism & Film office, gathered film activity data from municipalities across the county. The county’s economic impact estimates are based on a formula used by the Association of Film Commissioners International (AFCI) and include permit revenues, as well as revenue generated by retail establishments, restaurants, hotels, equipment rentals, and other film industry vendors.
Natasha Caputo, director of Westchester County Office of Tourism and Film, pointed out that Westchester’s appeal lies not only in its world-class locations, but also in its accessibility, affordability, and the hands-on support offered by the county’s Tourism & Film office.
“Our office has a deep knowledge of production needs and how to help location managers navigate the process of filming in Westchester,” said Caputo. “Westchester offers unique settings all within a short distance of New York City and is accessible for productions of all sizes through our airport, major highways, and a reliable rail and bus system. The county also offers a large talent pool of location scouts, production managers, crew, and postproduction specialists.”
In addition, the survey revealed a 130% increase, from $526,454 in 2014 to $1,209,804 in 2016, in permit revenues collected by the county and local municipalities. The county received $500,000 in permit fee revenue in 2016 for productions held on county-owned property, while municipalities collected over $700,000 in 2016, showing the positive impact film activity has on Westchester’s local towns and cities.
“There are real economic benefits from working with the film industry,” said Jill Lannetta, director of special projects for the City of White Plains. “Location fees help when budgets are tight for local businesses, schools, and residents. What’s more, local residents seem to enjoy seeing productions. Filming in White Plains has been overwhelmingly positive for us.”
Westchester’s filmography is packed with big budget films, independent films, and critically acclaimed television and cable series. In 2016, productions filming in Westchester included: “The Girl On The Train” (DreamWorks Pictures/Universal), “The Affair” (Showtime), “Divorce” (HBO), “Homeland” (Showtime), “Elementary” (CBS), “The Americans” (FX), “Mr. Robot” (USA Network), “Madam Secretary” (CBS), “Blind Spot” (NBC), “The Blacklist” (NBC).
“The bottom line is that Westchester is a valuable and viable option for the film industry,” said Astorino. “We’re ready and open for business. Our office looks forward to helping the industry discover what we already know: there’s no place quite like Westchester.”
For more information about filming in Westchester, visit http://www.visitwestchesterny.com/index.php/film