Cultural heritage, historic landmarks and the beautiful Rhone-Alpes makes for a perfect backdrop for a romantic film
France has always been amongst the favourites in terms of film destination. And this week, we take you on a tour to Rhone-Alpes. With the rugged topography of the peaks of Alps mountain range in the backdrop, the river valleys of Rhone and Saone in the foreground and countryside festooned with urban and bucolic settlements – this region is a quintessence of striking architecture and natural beauty.
Located on the eastern border, its capital is Lyon, the second most urbanised metropolitan after Paris. As the prefecture of the region, it is home to the historical landmarks and architectural facades, which have a strong cultural influence on the livelihood. Some of its historic sites date back to the 12th century, thus including it in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list. Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière, a minor basilica is an important tourist attraction. This Romanesque and Byzantine architecture was built in the 17th century and marks the triumph of Christianity.
Lyon can be easily divided into the various periods, ranging from antiquity to renaissance and the modern style. Together, they complement and narrate the rich history of the city. The Roman ruins near the hillside, Cathedral of St. John, the gothic church Eglise Saint-Nizier and the recently constructed Palais des congrès de Lyon amongst others are just some of the places that can be added to your itinerary.
Another major city, Annecy reflects upon the extraordinary juxtaposition of old and new styles of architecture. Its main sight includes the Palais de l’Isle, also known as the old prison. The facade located in the midst of the canal is the most photographed and visited locale. The esplanades besides the canal boast of the best bistros in the city. At night the area is illuminated with neon lights, which makes it a perfect getaway to unfurl the evening. In addition, the alleyways and boulevards of the city are decorated with colourful flowers, making the city appear, so picturesque.
Grenoble within its frontier encompasses history of more than 2000 years old. The defensive walls around the town are preserved for day-trippers along with the La Bastille, an ancient series of fortifications. It sits on the mountainside overlooking the stone-walled settlements, the city is famous for.
Valence and Saint-Étienne are other noted prefectures with umpteen points of interest. The latter is adorned with alleyways, ancient lampposts and houses with red-brick roofs, strikingly positioned amidst the modern constructions.
Thanks to the confluence of rich culture and modernisation, Rhone-Alpes is one of the most bankable states in France for filming. With the availability of state-of-the-art technology, open space and two funding aids, this region is an ideal destination for filmmakers to shoot any film genre.
France Tax Rebate
The Tax Rebate for International Productions (TRIP) supports foreign companies whose projects are completely or partly made in France. To be eligible, projects must include elements related to French culture, heritage, or territory. Eligibility is based on a Cultural Test, which assesses the relativity of the story, locations, characters, sources, landmarks, creators, crew and technical hubs.
The amount allocated comprises 20 per cent of the film expenses incurred in France, and caps at € 4 million per project. The TRIP is given to the French company managing the production in France on behalf of the foreign producer.
1. Eligible companies
To file a TRIP application, a company must meet the following criteria:
• Be subject to corporate income tax in France
• Act as line producer for the sequences produced in France, and enter a line production agreement with the foreign producer
The line production company is defined as the company, in compliance with a contract with a foreign production company, that supplies the artistic and technical means for making the TV-film or movie concerned, manages the material operations for making the project and monitors its proper execution.
There is no restriction to the capital mix of the applicant or its main business. The company can thus specialise in line production, or in film and TV production with executive production as its main activity; it can be an animation or VFX studio, a subsidiary of the foreign producer, an ad hoc created company, etc.
2. Eligible productions expenses
To be eligible to the TRIP, a live action film or TV project must meet all of the following criteria:
• The project must be a live action film
• Live action documentaries or films used for advertising or corporate purposes are not eligible
• The project may not be pornographic or promote violence
• The project must not receive any other financial support for production
• The project must spend a minimum of 1 million Euros on eligible expenses in France
• Live action projects must shoot at least five days in France
3. Eligible expenses
To be eligible, the project must ensure that the expenses mentioned below are incurred by the French line producer who submits the application to the Centre National de la Cinematography (CNC). These expenses must directly contribute to the production needs.
The maximum tax rebate is Euro 4 million. It comprises 20 per cent of the following expenses, excluding tax:
• Wages and compensation for French and European authors, actors, and crew members
For actors, the compensation amount considered for the tax rebate is limited to the minimum compensation amount outlined in the collective bargaining agreements of the movie industry. When the line production company employs production personnel on a permanent basis, eligible costs will only include the wages, payroll taxes and benefits that incur when the concerning personnel was employed for production. This includes the following:
• All technical expenses (rentals and purchases)
• Transportation, including international transport of materials and crew
• Catering expenses that are incurred for the needs of the production
• Expenses related to a shorter shoot outside France that utilise the same crew and material used in France and that are paid through the line producer
• Depreciation amounts
Feature-length Films Co-production
Rhone-Alpes Cinema’s mission is to finance feature-length films shot in the Rhone-Alpes region and to ensure their promotion in the region. This financial investment is made in exchange of a percentage on the negative and the receipts.
Every year, the film commission comes with a € 3 million investment capacity, mainly consisting in funds from Rhone-Alpes region and CNC and also in receipts resulting from film running. Ten to fifteen films are co-produced by Rhone-Alpes Cinema.