LANSING – The Michigan Film Office announced today that the feature film Freaky Deaky has been approved for a film incentive from the state. The film is based on the novel by Michigan author and New York Times bestseller Elmore Leonard and will be directed by Charlie Matthau. The story is set in Detroit and follows the exploits of a former group of 60’s radicals when they meet again in 1974.
“Elmore Leonard stands shoulder to shoulder among Michigan’s most noteworthy authors, and we are thrilled that Freaky Deaky, a story that unfolds across the city of Detroit, will be shot right here where it belongs,” said Carrie Jones, director of the Michigan Film Office. “This project will employ our workforce and infrastructure, showcase our state, and highlight the work of Elmore Leonard – a great Michigan talent. It is a terrific project and an exciting Pure Michigan opportunity.”
Freaky Deaky was awarded an incentive of $2,864,020 on $6,926,071 of projected in-state expenditures. The project is expected to hire 235 Michigan workers with a full time equivalent of 59 jobs. Leonard, a graduate of the University of Detroit Jesuit High School and the University of Detroit, has called Michigan home since the age of nine. Freaky Deaky will be the fourteenth of Leonard’s 44 novels to be adapted to film, but the first adaptation to be filmed entirely in Michigan.
“This is the best news I've heard about Michigan's participating in feature films,” Leonard said.
Freaky Deaky is the eighth project approved under the new policy and guidelines issued by the Michigan Film Office. In 2011, 10 projects have been approved with $15,852,419 in incentives being awarded on $38,197,616 of approved production expenditures for the year. These projects are expected to create 1,121 Michigan hires with a full time equivalent of 256 jobs.
All applications for film incentives receive a thorough review by a Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) committee comprised of the Senior Vice President of 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 is used to guide approval decisions. Preference is given to projects that best meet the following criteria:
1. The production is financially viable.
2. Utilization of existing infrastructure (studios, post-production facilities, film labs, etc.).
3. The number and wage levels of direct jobs for Michigan residents created by a production.
4. Ability to show Michigan in a positive light and promote the state as a tourist destination.
5. 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. Since the incentives took effect in April 2008, the Film Office and the Department of Treasury have approved a total of $376,918,233 in film incentives on $959,570,720 in total qualified expenditures by productions in Michigan. This represents 215 projects that have been approved to date, including 138 projects that have actually wrapped in the state.
The Michigan Film Office was created in 1979 to assist and attract incoming production companies and 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.
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