LANSING – The Michigan Film Office announced today that the feature film Five Year Engagement has been approved for a film incentive from the state. The project, expected to shoot primarily in Ann Arbor, was approved for an incentive of $5,263,464 on $12,532,056 of direct Michigan spend.
Five Year Engagement is a comedy that will be released by Universal Pictures in 2011 directed by Nicholas Stoller and produced by Judd Apatow. The film re-teams Apatow with Jason Segel who starred in Universal and Apatow’s hit film Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Emily Blunt will star alongside Segel.
“Ann Arbor plays a central role in this film, so it is only fitting that the project be shot here in Michigan,” said Carrie Jones, director of the Michigan Film Office. “This is a terrific opportunity to showcase our state to a national audience while benefitting from investments made by the project in local economies.”
Five Year Engagement is the first project approved under the new policy and guidelines released by the Michigan Film Office last week. Under the new policy, all pending and future applications will receive a thorough review by a Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) committee comprised of the Senior Vice President for Marketing and Communications, the Senior Vice President of Policy, the Vice President of Business Development and the Director of the Michigan Film Office.
The current statute will be used to guide approval decisions, with preference will be given to projects that best meet the following criteria:
· The production company is financially viable.
· Utilization of existing infrastructure (studios, post-production facilities, film labs etc.).
· The number and wage levels of direct jobs for Michigan residents created by a production.
· Ability to show Michigan in a positive light and promote the state as a tourist destination.
· Magnitude of estimated expenditures in Michigan.
The film incentive program will continue to be jointly administered by the Michigan Film Office and the Department of Treasury and all projects must be approved in concurrence with the state treasurer.
“We appreciate the work of Michigan’s Film Office in helping secure an incentive for us to film in the state,” said Universal Pictures Chairman Adam Fogelson. “It is these types of programs that make it mutually beneficial for us to use Michigan as a backdrop in our movies.”
“This process will help to ensure every project approved provides us with the best possible investment for the state,” Jones said. “We are moving forward with the approval process for 2011 and look forward to working with the industry to attract projects to our state that utilize our infrastructure, create economic development and showcase Michigan and all it has to offer.”
The Michigan Film Office was created in 1979 to assist and attract incoming production companies and to promote the growth of Michigan’s own film industry. The Film Office also administers the incentive program for film, television and other digital media production in Michigan, as well as infrastructure development and workforce training.