Over the last few months the television production industry in Miami has been reeling with the cancellation of three shows filmed in the area. The Starz series Magic City, The A&E series The Glades, and one of Miami’s TV mainstays, USA’s Burn Notice, which recently premiered its 110th and final episode on September 12. Much talk has been made as to whether Tallahassee will extend its film production tax incentives through the 2016 deadline with so much business leaving the state. There has also been conversation about Miami’s new plans to supply a developer $10 Million dollars of taxpayer credit in order to build a new film studio near the Overtown area in Miami.
Miami lawmakers want to invest the money to fill the void that the demolition of the Coconut Grove Convention Center, which housed Burn Notice for seven years, will create. However, many film industry veterans and local government watchdogs are wondering why Miami would want to invest taxpayer money in the project. There are already many production companies and sound stages that pepper the city. With the number of those sound stages reaching more than 20 plus, why would the city need taxpayer dollars for another one?
And what productions would line up to fill this new studio in the first place? There is only one major television show currently shooting around the South Florida area and it’s the new USA series Graceland. No one wants this money to go to a lot that stays empty most of the time. Hopefully, with the construction of the new sound stage and more film incentives on the way, the Miami television industry can get back to its early success, reward tax payer dollars, create numerous opportunities for citizens, and showcase the beautiful city on the silver screen.