Op-Ed: UK Entertainment Industry Gets Needed Tax Relief

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“Dear Mr. Shenton,

Thank you for getting in touch.  Unfortunately we have no new projects in production and will be unable to offer you a position at this time. We will keep your details on record in case a suitable position arises.”

In the last 6 months I have received over 100 emails to this effect. Since leaving university I have applied for animation positions in over 200 studios and have only had one interview. Maybe it is my lack of experience or the quality of my work but feedback from these studios seems to suggest that for someone at my level I am employable they just don’t have anything in production or enough budget to take on an intern or junior.

Hopefully soon I may see a change in my circumstances as George Osborne, the U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer (equivalent to the treasury secretary), has just approved a new tax incentive for the entertainment industry.  As of 1st April, animation and high-end TV productions will receive a 25% tax relief.

The relief will hopefully bring the U.K. closer to competing with larger American studios and help stabilise the future of the industry. Adrian Wootton, chief executive of the British Film Commission and Film London said:

“The new measures will ensure that we can continue to compete globally on a level playing field; and continue to attract the biggest and most technically challenging film and television projects to the U.K.”

Fingers crossed this time next month I may be writing with news of my new career within the industry but just in case… My name is Phil Shenton, I am an enthusiastic animator desperately seeking a break and my showreel can be found here.

Can’t blame a guy for trying.

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