If you’re a Marvel fan, you probably saw the fun photos of Chris Hemsworth and Chris Pratt in Australia on the set for the new, highly-anticipated “Thor” movie that’s supposed to release this year, pandemic-willing. The cast of the upcoming Marvel film “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” – featuring the first Asian-American lead – is also filming in Australia. Wait … so are all Marvel Studio stars for the next five years!
Marvel abandons the states
Marvel Studios’ parent company, Disney (Ever heard of it?), is trading its Atlanta, Georgia headquarters for one in Sydney, Australia for at least the next five years. Apparently, Australia managed the pandemic well, so it’s safer and easier to film there.
But Marvel movies aren’t the only ones moving Down Under. Reportedly, Julia Roberts is filming a political thriller in Sydney. Even the new project about Joe Exotic – the infamous and imprisoned big cat guy – is headed for Australia. This location makes sense for our current situation, but why would Marvel move there for five years?
Back in July 2020, Australia announced a $280 million incentive, adding this chunk of change to their existing 16.5% tax rebate they use to get big-budget films produced on their soil. Their approach seems to be working because film and TV studios are expected to bring roughly $1.5 billion to the Australian economy. Plus, more than half of the 20,000 jobs lost by Australian screen industry workers have been returned. This growth is great news for their economy as they recover from the pandemic.
Why are studios leaving Hollywood?
You’ve probably noticed when you watch a show supposedly set in New York City, and the credits may show that it was shot in Canada! This difference is because of money – A.K.A. more tax incentives – and lighter union rules. Canada offers production companies money to film there. Plus, it’s more expensive and time-consuming to shoot in Hollywood because of the regulations.
Georgia and the U.S. film industry
A few years back, Georgia decided to follow in Canada’s footsteps and introduce tax incentives; the state saw billions of dollars in revenue. Several major studios moved their bases to Georgia, including Marvel. But thanks to politics and the pandemic, the film industry is evolving. Because the U.S. hasn’t yet cleared up the COVID issue, we are left behind when it comes to the film industry. Australia is stepping up and taking thousands of U.S. jobs. Post-pandemic, we don’t know if our states can beat what the Aussies are offering. Will these industry jobs come back, or will Marvel, Disney and other studios move overseas permanently? We’ll have to stay tuned.