direttore Paolo Di Maira

ENZO SISTI/All Thanks to the Tax Credit

 “Considering European competition in terms of costs and economic incentives, the tax credit is the most important reason Americans have for coming to film in Italy” states Enzo Sisti, the executive producer of movies like “Mission Impossible III”, “The Passion”, “Nativity” “The life Acquatic with Steve Zissou” and “When in Rome”.

His latest executive production is “The American”, a thriller based on the novel “A Very Private Gentleman” by Martin Blooth, set in the Apennine mountains.
Directed by Anton Corbjin (“Control”), starring George Clooney along with a number of Italian actors including Violante Placido, Paolo Bonacelli and Filippo Timi, the movie was filmed last fall, over a period of 9 weeks, in the Abruzzo region: in Sulmona, Castel Del Monte and other small neighboring towns.
“Everything went just fine, we kept to schedule and came in below budget”, the executive producer is keen to underline. The movie will be released in the US at the beginning of September and will, therefore, be available for selection at the Venice Film Festival.
“The American” benefited from a tax credit of over 1.5 million Euros, between 13 and 15% of the entire budget.
“If there hadn’t been a tax credit”, says Enzo Sisti, “the producers could probably just as easily have set in the movie in any other part of Europe, in Croatia or Sweden, for example, filming as little of it as possible in Italy.

It is paradoxical that this tax benefit formally expires at the end of 2010. We must all put pressure on the government to renew it, otherwise we will go back to hosting American films for the usual 3-4 day periods only”.
“The introduction of tax credits in our country “” albeit later than in Germany, the UK and France “” has been welcomed with a lot interest by the Hollywood community”.
And the effects are clear to see: compared to before tax credits were introduced, the number of days of filming on American movies in Italy “has increased significantly because, added to the beauty of our cities, the climate and the food, thereis also an economic advantage”.
This, explains Sisti, “brings both direct and indirect benefits”.
Not just expenditure in the territory, an increase in tourism and economic advantages in general, but also the promotion of the image of our country around the world.
There is also another very important aspect: professional growth. Although “our professional skills are equal if not superior to those of foreign technicians”, it is evident that only the big production companies can allow themselves to experiment with innovative technologies.
Sisti mentions, as an example, the “Spydercam”, used in Italy for “Mission Impossible III”.
But it is also important that our actors are able to work with directors of international stature.
“Even today”, says Sisti, “the people who worked on “The Passion” by Mel Gibson remember it as a unique experience”.

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