The Economic Impact
of the Motion Picture & Television
on the United States
With contributions from:
Edward Jay Epstein, Author of The Big Picture,
The New Logic of Money and Power in Hollywood
Eve Troeh, Reporter for National Public Radio
Harold Vogel Author of Entertainment Industry
Economics, A Guide for Financial Analysis
Table of Contents
A Message from Dan Glickman............................................ 2
Report highlights................................................................ 5
Creating high quality jobs.................................................... 6
Developing small businesses and entrepreneurship................ 7
Generating tax revenues...................................................... 9
Competing successfully around the world............................10
Production around the country........................................... 11
Making an impact in states............................................... 13
Letters from governors...................................................... 16
Investing in infrastructure and community development....... 19
Promoting tourism............................................................ 21
Providing leadership in the digital age................................ 22
Surveying the future, addressing challenges........................ 23
Above: XXX: State of the Union, courtesy Columbia Pictures; photo by Zade Rosenthal
Cover, front and back: Courtesy Columbia Pictures, DreamWorks LLC, Lionsgate Films, New Line Productions,
Paramount Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros. Entertainment.
On behalf of the Motion Picture Association of America and our six
member studios, I am pleased to present the industry’s first nation-
wide economic impact report.
The report underscores that an industry known for its creative
product is also an economic engine responsible for bringing billions
of dollars and hundreds of thousands of jobs to communities across
America. We can all recount the “unforgettable” moments from our
favorite movies, scenes that make us laugh, cry, cheer, wonder, and
believe. Less well known is the enormous and ongoing impact of
our industry on the American economy.
Over 1.3 million Americans are employed as a result of the
motion picture and television production industry.
On-location production creates jobs and generates tax revenues
in cities and towns all across the United States, contributing
an estimated $200,000 a day into the coffers of the localities
where they film.
The American motion picture industry also carries a positive
balance of trade around the world and a $9.5 billion trade
A Message from Dan Glickman
For decades, the motion picture and television production industry
has been a cornerstone in keeping the American economy strong
and growing. Today, we are bringing that same leadership and vi-
sion into the digital age, with significant investments and advances
in in-theater digital technology and new delivery platforms being
developed each day. We are committed to keeping our industry at
the forefront of the worldwide entertainment market and to ensuring
that our contribution to the U.S. economy continues to grow.
Thank you for reading this report. I believe you will find it is an
interesting, informative and entertaining look at an important Ameri-
can enterprise – the motion picture industry. See you at the movies.
Purpose of the Report by Edward Jay Epstein, author of The Big Picture:
The New Logic of Money and Power in Hollywood
The creative output of the American
motion picture and television production “The American motion picture and television production industry has grown
industry is widely recognized around the into a vibrant artistic and economic force worldwide. It would have been
world, yet its contribution to the nation’s difficult to predict at the birth of the American motion picture industry that it
economy is seldom recognized. This re- would mature into the significant source of economic growth and employment
port, prepared by the MPAA using data covered in this report. From its founding at the beginning of the 20th Century
from studios, networks, payroll compa- by European immigrants showing talking pictures in arcades, nickelodeons,
nies, guilds and government statistics, and small exhibition halls, the industry has evolved into a vast complex of
illuminates the industry’s impact on the businesses producing a visual culture now experienced by most of the world.
national economy. While the numbers
presented in this report are impres- The continued evolution and growth of the industry is not an accident, but the
sive, it must be kept in mind that they result of a willingness to change. The movies, television, and Hollywood evoke
are a conservative snapshot of a global images of glitz, glamour, and the red carpet. That image fails to capture the
industry. Due to the breadth and com- challenging creative process of putting a story onto film, and the business of
plexity of the American motion picture show business. To survive as businesses over the years, the industry has con-
and television production industry, this sistently reinvented itself. By the time talking pictures were introduced in the
report does not fully quantify the impact late 1920s, about two-thirds of the population went to neighborhood movie
of its activities upon all the individuals, theaters every week. By the end of the 1940s, the advent of home television
businesses, and governmental entities drew away a large part of the 90 million Americans who went to the movies in
that benefit from those activities. The an average week. By the late 1980s, even though the population had nearly
total economic impact is likely much doubled, annual ticket sales had fallen from 4.6 billion in 1948 to 1 billion.
greater, and more far-reaching, than this
report reveals. In the best tradition of show business, the industry has followed its audi-
ence and worked to redefine the business. The studios not only licensed their
movie libraries to television, they produced original programming for the broad-
cast networks and for television stations around the world. After VCRs became
commonplace in the American home in the 1980s, they created a huge rental
market for videos. In the 1990s, with the arrival of the digital revolution, the
studios followed their audience into the home with DVDs and video-on-de-
mand and other digital delivery platforms.
Throughout it all movies have continued to be a driving force in the new equa-
tion. The global movie culture continues to be shaped by Hollywood’s movies,
stars and technology. By transcending the bounds of national tongues, and
being more accessible than newspapers, books, and other print media in many
parts of the world, it has provided a near universal way of looking at the way
people relate to society.”
Left: Coach Carter, courtesy Paramount Pictures
Above top: The Chronicles of Narnia, courtesy Disney/Walden; photo by Phil Bray
Above bottom: Madagascar, courtesy DreamWorks Animation SKG
Right: Four Brothers, courtesy Paramount Pictures; photo by George Kraychyk
The creation of motion pictures and television programs
is one of the nation’s most vital and valuable resources.
In 2005, the motion picture and television industry generated:
. over 1.3 million American jobs;
. an average salary of $73,000 for direct employees;
. $30.24 billion in wages to workers in America;
. $30.20 billion in
revenue to U.S. vendors
. $60.4 billion in
output to the U.S. economy;
. $10 billion in
income and sales taxes; and
. $9.5 billion in
Above: The Island, courtesy DreamWorks Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures; photo by Merrick Morton
Right: King Kong, courtesy Universal Pictures
With a payroll of over $30 billion, the motion picture and television industry is a major pri-
vate-sector employer. In 2005, the total number of U.S. residents employed by the motion
picture, commercial and television production industry was over 1.3 million.
Over 180,000 people were directly employed as studio, independent production com-
pany, or core industry supplier staff. Core industry suppliers include film labs, special
effects and digital studios, location services, prop and wardrobe houses, research ser-
vices and film stock houses, video duplicating services and stage rental facilities among
Creating high quality jobs
Another 231,000 were freelance workers, including actors, directors, writers, and techni-
cal or craft specialists. While freelance employees account for more than half of the
industry’s workforce, it’s important to note that freelance is not synonymous with “part-
time” as many work full time.
The industry produces high quality and high paying jobs. The average salary of those directly
employed in the industry was $73,000 in 2005--nearly 80 percent higher than the average
salary nationwide.1 It is worth noting that the calculation of both the payroll and the average
salary figures excludes salaries paid to highly compensated talent.
The industry also generates what labor analysts call “indirect” jobs through companies such as
movie theaters, themed retailers and restaurants, video rental stores, and tourist attractions.
Nearly 1 million people were employed in such jobs.
Direct payments for goods and ized nature. More than 160,000 of the films released in the U.S.
services to vendors by the industry firms around the country were in 2005 were produced by inde-
added $30 billion to the nation’s involved in the industry in 2005 - pendents, up from 43 percent in
economy in 2005. These pay- from production to distribution, and 1995.3
ments not only go to specialized working for independents as well
businesses that exclusively serve as major studios. Approximately The graphic at the right illustrates
the entertainment industry, such as 85 percent of these firms employ the vast array of individuals vital to
wardrobe companies and camera fewer than 10 people.2 In essence, bringing a motion picture or televi-
equipment firms, but also to gen- the motion picture and television sion program to fruition.
eral suppliers serving a number of production industry is largely entre-
other industries, such as caterers, preneurial and dominated by small Few industries in the world are as
lumberyards, apparel retailers and businesses and individuals. large and yet depend so heavily on
florists. an economically diverse work force
Additionally, independent produc- based on regional networks collabo-
One of the most unique characteris- tion companies produce an increas- rating on projects.
tics of the motion picture and televi- ing percentage of feature films and
sion related industry is its decentral- television programs. 65 percent
Entertainment Industry: Share of Total U.S. Firms by Employees
Total U.S. Firms = 164,736
2 to 4
3% 5 to 9
2% 1% 1%
10 to 24
36% 25 to 49
50 to 99
100 to 249
250 to 499
500 to 999
Less than 1%
1,000 to 2,499
2,500 to 4,999
5,000 or above
Right: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, courtesy Touchstone Pictures
What goes in... What comes next...
Production Workflow PAGE 8
Generating tax revenues
Communities throughout the U.S. and in other countries zealously promote entertainment
development because the industry attracts capital and earns revenues that create local
jobs and generate tax revenues critical for public needs.
In 2005, just two types of taxes paid by the motion picture and television production in-
dustry - taxes paid by industry workers and sales taxes on goods and services - generated
approximately $10 billion in public revenues in the United States.
Total tax revenues included $3.1 billion in income taxes at the fed-
eral level and $1.5 billion in income taxes at the state level, along
with $4.7 billion in additional unemployment, Medicare and Social
Other taxes paid, but that could not be quantified for this study,
include corporate income taxes, property taxes and business license
taxes. Also not included are tax revenues generated by indirect
Above top: Aeon Flux, courtesy Paramount Pictures; Above bottom: Chicken Little, courtesy Disney Enterprises
Right top: Four Brothers, courtesy Paramount Pictures; photo by George Kraychyk
Right middle: Bewitched, courtesy Columbia Pictures; photo by: John Bramley
Right bottom: Interpreter, courtesy Universal Pictures
around the world
We live in the age of a global economy in the American industry in 2005. Stopping
which trade and technology are bringing the those losses will depend on first, improving
world closer together. The American motion intellectual property laws in many countries
picture industry plays a pivotal role in expand- and second, ensuring that those laws are fully
ing the U.S. economy through the arts, the enforced.5
latest technology, and international trade. In
2005, the enduring entertainment value and In addition, in some key markets, the mer-
appeal of US films around the world earned chants of pirated products have the markets to
$10.4 billion in audiovisual exports, a 20 per- themselves; the legitimate motion picture in-
cent increase since 2000. Moreover, the US dustry is denied fair access to the market due
motion picture industry is one of the few in- to quotas and other forms of discriminatory
dustries that consistently generates a positive government policies. Future export growth de-
balance of trade. In 2005, that surplus was pends on worldwide audiences having the free-
$9.5 billion, a total larger than the combined dom to decide for themselves which movies to
positive trade balance for telecommunications attend, without being hampered by intrusive
and computer and information services, and government policies and market barriers.
was 12 percent of the entire US private-sector
service trade surplus.4 The positive balance of trade the motion
picture industry generates is an important
The American motion picture industry has not aspect of maintaining the economic stability
achieved these remarkable successes in the and competitiveness of the nation. The export
export market without overcoming great obsta- of audiovisual services is a reliable engine of
cles, some of which still hobble the industry’s employment growth, generating jobs that on
ability to grow. The two principal challenges average pay 13 to 18 percent more than the
are piracy and market barriers. Piracy outside median wage.6
of the United States sapped $4.8 billion from
Motion picture and television production growth produces dramatic benefits
for the U.S. economy and its residents, benefits that are spread throughout the
With 699 feature films produced in 2005, nearly all of the 50 states had full
or partial feature film production activity during 2005 - plus television program
and other production activity, which is also spread around various states.
the country 237
Top production states 7
All numbers were provided by the state film commissions. There is some variation
in inclusion definitions based on each commission’s methodology. In California, of-
ficial data is not recorded by the film commission. Estimate is conservatively based Right: Lost, courtesy ABC, Inc; photo by Bob D’amico
Extreme right: The Fog, courtesy Columbia Pictures;
on published production reports and location permits. photo by Rob McEwan
30 states have found motion picture
and television production to be so
beneficial to their economies that
they have enacted specific incen-
tives to increase production in their
states. What follows are summaries
from various states on how produc-
tion activity benefits their residents.
Oscar-winning film Walk the Line shot over 45 days in Memphis and
Nashville in 2004. Producers spent about $10 million in Tennessee,
creating a total economic impact of $18 million to $20 million.8
Making an impact in states
Arizona ’s film com- California , the Connecticut
mission found that during 2003 (the heart of the American motion picture is a popular production locale for film-
most recent year for which data is and television industry, was one of makers both because of its proximity
available), $21.9 million in wages the primary locations for 365 produc- to New York City and because of the
was earned by Arizona residents from tions in 2005. In terms of economic state’s new production incentive pro-
612 direct and 1,092 indirect indus- activity, the industry generated a total gram. In addition to 8,000 film jobs
try jobs. The film industry generated of $42.2 billion, split almost equally and 18,000 support jobs, the film in-
more than $107 million in direct between payroll expenditures and dustry generated $2.5 billion in gross
economic activity with an additional payments to vendors. Approximately state product, including $1.2 billion in
$94.1 million of indirect activity. The 266,000 people were directly em- personal income, in 2005.11
state believes that these numbers ployed in the motion picture and tele-
have risen substantially since 2003, vision industry in California, with an
particularly with the enactment of average salary of $80,600. Including in 2005 benefited
an incentives program in January of indirect employment, the number of from expenditures totalling $100 mil-
2006.9 people working in California as a result lion in production dollars from feature
of the industry totals over 500,000.10 films alone. A new tax credit, which
went into effect in May 2006, is ex-
pected to grow that amount.12
The Governor’s office estimates the
expe- state has benefited to the financial
rienced $53 million in production tune of about $780 million in total, has seen its share of film productions
related spending in the past 6 years, once the economic impact generated lured by state incentives, and the state
resulting in an $81.4 million impact by the money as it passes through a quantified the resulting economic im-
on its economy, plus 930 full time variety of hands in the local economy pact to the state in 2005 at $249 mil-
equivalent jobs in the film industry is calculated.16 lion. Recent productions choosing to
and 444 jobs indirectly. The film film in Pennsylvania include Invincible
industry also generated $4.3 million and the 2006 CineVegas honoree The
dollars of tax revenue for Montana.13 City 4th Dimension.19
in 2006 hosted the highest number
of film, television, commercial and
continues to music video shoots in its history. In finds that film produc-
benefit from various television and 2005, there were just over 31,500 tions have become an enormous eco-
film productions set in locales ranging “shoot days,” but the number jumped nomic development opportunity. The
from the bright lights of Las Vegas to 10 percent to over 34,700 in 2006. state’s Motion Picture Incentive Fund
the remote ghost town of Rhyolite, fol- Independent productions accounted helped bring several productions to the
lowing in the path of such classics as for 90 percent of the 250 feature films state, including World’s Fastest Indian
The Godfather Part II, Rain Man, and shot in New York City in 2005. There and High School Musical, which will
Casino, which all filmed in part in Ne- was a $1.5 billion economic benefit see its sequel shot in Utah as well.20
vada. The Nevada Film Office found in 2005 from the “Made in N.Y.”
that in 2005 film and TV production incentive program, which has created
contributed $102.5 million into the thousands of new jobs by bringing
state’s economy in 2005, with actors, $2.4 billion in business to New York
directors and crew personnel showing over the past two years.17
up for 3,210 workdays.14
New Jersey ’s
production incentives drove spend-
has benefited from its proximity to the ing on features, television programs,
production hub of New York City, re- commercials and other productions
sulting in a film economy of $83 mil- to $300 million in 2005. The recent
lion as of 2004 (up from an estimated hit film Talladega Nights: The Legend
$61 million in 1999). This growth of Ricky Bobby was filmed in North
was spurred in part by legislation Carolina.18
awarding a tax credit to filmmakers, as Using the Two Dollar Policy, by Marian Rees, Independent film producer, whose
well as state-sponsored incentives.15 company has produced 37 films on location.
“To demonstrate the positive impact of filming on the local community, during one
New Mexico production I decided all per diems would be paid to the crew in two dollar bills,
which, when spent on the cleaners, laundry, restaurants, grocery stores, and other
is seeing major benefits from financial shops would be tangible evidence of the money ending in local merchants’ hands. In
incentives initiated in 2003 to draw meeting with business leaders I gave them a picture of the positive financial impact
filmmakers to the Land of Enchant- our production would make, but the ‘persuaders’ were the two dollar bills that seemed
ment. The state has taken in about to float through the town, soon to become collectors’ items. Our two dollar policy be-
$260 million in expenditures by came a part of our philosophy for every future film. That, and always leave a location
production companies since that time. the same if not better than when we arrive.”
Left: Walk the Line, courtesy Twentieth Century Fox
Above: Monk, courtesy NBC Universal Photography Department
by Eve Troeh, independent radio producer filing regularly for years, but to be able to come back and have opportunities in
NPR, Weekend America and others. features, it’s perfect.”
“Film and television production is expected to contribute Malcom Petal is CEO of the local studio Lift Films, which
more than $400 million to Louisiana’s economy in 2007. employs up to 500 people, and pays wages that start at
The industry has boomed since the state passed tax credits $20 an hour. He says production builds Louisiana’s middle
five years ago, and has come back stronger than ever since class. “There’s a job for every trade: carpenters, electricians
Hurricane Katrina. and hairdressers. Every business in town gets used: the
hotels, dry cleaners and car rental services.”
Production helps Louisiana retain and attract creative human
capital. On the set of the $150 million Paramount feature Petal, who used to be a lawyer for oil and gas companies,
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button in New Orleans, a also points out that film is a non-polluting industry.
local church choir sings as background talent. Locals in
jobs from lighting to craft services talk excitedly about their A new set of tax credits encourages entrepreneurs like Petal
careers. to build soundstages, post-production houses and film
schools to make Louisiana’s film industry even more self-
Some, like actor Lance Nicholls, have even moved back to sustaining.”
their home state. “I was living in Los Angeles for about 24
Letters from Governors
Left: XXX: State of the Union, courtesy Columbia Pictures; photo by Zade Rosenthal PAGE 16
Investing in infrastructure
and community development
In addition to direct “ A $25 million expansion and renova- “ Director George Lucas pledged $175
entertainment pro- tion of the Queens, New York site of the Mu- million to the University of Southern Califor-
duction payrolls and seum of the Moving Image began in February nia’s film school, in Los Angeles, California,
expenditures, the in- 2005 to include new galleries, an outdoor in 2006 to build a 137,000 square-foot com-
dustry actively invests theater, an educational center, and a new col- plex in an effort to meld the film industry’s
in infrastructure and lection storage facility.21 story-telling skills with digital technologies.24
facilities that have
a positive effect on “ The Jacob Burns Film Center in “ Silvercup Studios, the largest
community develop- Pleasantville, New York broke ground in Janu- independent television and film production
ment and real estate ary 2007 on a $12 million 25,000 square- complex in the Northeast, is adding a 3rd
markets. Here are a foot media and education center, scheduled location in New York in the form of 2.2 mil-
few samples of such to open in 2008.22 lion square-foot of space for $1 billion. The
capital projects. complex will include a 500-ft.-high com-
“ LIFT Productions plans to build a mercial tower, two residential towers, eight
$100 million 320,000 square-foot, nine soundstages, a catering facility for up to
block long film studio in New Orleans, 8,000 people, and 100,000 sq. ft. of cul-
Louisiana that will include soundstages and tural space.25
post-production facilities as well as vocational
facilities to train film industry workers such “ Metro Productions built a $1 mil-
as hairdressers, electricians, costume design- lion 10,000 square-foot production facility in
ers, set builders, and camera operators.23 Richmond, Virginia. The facility includes a
fully-equipped 40-by-40 soundstage, a green
Motion picture and television production also has a ing areas for tourism all around the country. In the
beneficial impact on tourism - another vital engine Annals of Tourism Research, researchers concluded
of economic growth. Entertainment-related attrac- that, on average, a location featured in a success-
tions and film industry landmarks are well known ful film could expect to see visitors increase by an
as promoting tourism in Hollywood. Not as well average of 54 percent over the next four years.
known is the important role films play in promot-
Spotlight: Sideways and Santa Barbara
by Martine White the Santa Ynez Valley for 47 days of
County Film Commissioner shooting and four months of pre-pro- When the Golden Globe® and Oscar®
Santa Barbara Conference & Visitors duction in 2003. nominations sparked even greater
Bureau and Film Commission interest in the film, the hotels in the
The Commission decided to use Side- Santa Ynez Valley and businesses fea-
“The film Sideways was inspired by ways to launch a movie tourism niche tured in “Sideways, The Map” reported
experiences in the wine country in marketing campaign, working with business was booming, as consumers
Santa Barbara County, California. The the film producer and a local artist and Sideways fans began flocking to
Santa Barbara County Film Com- to create a Sideways tour map based the wine country. Tasting room traffic
mission began working with Director on the locations featured in the film. was on the rise at Santa Barbara’s
Alexander Payne and the Sideways The map, which has been re-printed 60+ tasting venues and demand for
team during pre-production, familiar- three times due to demand, highlights Santa Barbara County wines skyrock-
izing and connecting them with the 18 locations from the film. To date, eted nationally. Overall, we forecast
local community, who embraced the 120,000 maps have been distributed an impact of 15 percent on tourism
Sideways crew while they made their and over 65,000 people have down- revenue to the county over the next
home in Santa Barbara County and loaded it from santabarbaraCA.com. four years.”
Above: Sideways, courtesy Fox Searchlight
Right: Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith, courtesy Twentieth Century Fox
The American motion picture industry monorail, the industry has continued sumers whenever and wherever they
is a world leader in developing and to press the boundaries of what is want it. Through digital cinema, next
deploying new technologies. The feasible. generation DVD formats, and digital
industry’s demand for new media, rights management technologies the
special effects, and enhanced sound In addition to enhancing the enjoy- industry is facilitating new business
and visual quality, has resulted in ment of filmed entertainment, the models that will create more choices
innovations that enhance the viewing industry’s inventions serve the public for consumers while also discouraging
experience and advance the progress good. For example, rather than en- digital theft. Already the industry is
of science and the public interest. In force their film restoration patents, the delivering content through digital cin-
recognition of these advancements the industry has freely shared that tech- ema, high definition DVDs, streaming
major film studios have been awarded nology to enable restoration of many on demand, download to own, peer-
over 1,000 patents in a variety of old, fragile filmed works from the early to-peer technology, social networking
fields both expected and unexpected. 20th Century. Industry members are sites, and mobile devices.
The range of ideas and their lasting also developing technologies to protect
impact is impressive. Whether it is the environment, such as through
synchronizing music and dialogue on implementation of a low emission
film, marrying the concept of 3D and launch system for firework displays.
color film, introducing surround sound,
developing the DVD, or developing The industry is also leading the way in
and implementing the first commercial providing filmed entertainment to con-
Providing leadership in the
by Harold L. Vogel, Author of Entertain- unusually rapid adjustment and transi-
ment Industry Economics, 7th ed. forth- tion. Whenever this happens, the market
coming May 2007. New York: Cambridge demand shifts dramatically toward those
University Press. who possess new types of knowledge and
skills and displaces those who do not.
“The introductions of television, home
video, cable, direct broadcast satellites, Newspaper headlines typically do not
and DVDs have all had an historically present the whole story of the dynamism
important and ultimately beneficial impact of expanding opportunities that the new
on the economic landscape in which technologies quietly originate a few new
filmed entertainment is produced and dis- jobs at a time. If history is any guide,
tributed. But digital/Internet technology is transition into the new age of digital
already proving to be much more profound filmed entertainment will ultimately have
and disruptive than any of these earlier an enormous positive effect on the in-
innovations. Traditional business models dustry and on the overall economy of the
and strategies are becoming increasingly United States.”
ineffective and are now in the process of
Surveying the future,
Will the economic contributions of the will spur further demand.
industry continue to increase? The answer
is “yes.” Forecasters predict the demand for At the same time, however, there are
motion picture and television products will serious challenges ahead to domestic and
continue to grow, as the methods for deliv- overseas success, including piracy, the risk
ering them to the consumer evolve. Ana- of filmed entertainment market saturation,
lyst Harold Vogel states, “[t]echnological global macroeconomic trends, and poten-
development has been the driving force tial fragmentation brought about by local
behind the growth of the entertainment in- content, targeted development subsidies,
dustries. Development of technology leads and protectionist policies pursued by cer-
indirectly to an increase in leisure time tain foreign countries and states.
availability and leads directly to qualita-
tive improvements and cost reductions in Within the U.S., many factors will help
manufacturing and distribution.”33 determine whether entertainment produc-
tion continues to expand. One of the most
New distribution capabilities boost demand important is the political and regulatory
for entertainment products, and the enter- climate. Practical, cost-effective measures
tainment industries overall are expected to enhance industry operations, includ-
to continue to grow at faster than average ing federal production tax incentives, will
rates.34 Legal and diplomatic measures increase the probability of entertainment
opening foreign markets, as well as increas- industry growth and hence the growth of
ing modern theater construction overseas the U.S. economy.
1. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 19. Ibid.
2. LEK Analysis, Dun & Bradstreet Marketplace Database. 20. Deseret Morning News, “State wants to increase movie incentive fund,”
3. MPAA Worldwide Market Research. Brice Wallace, Salt Lake City, UT, 01/11/07.
4. The U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis, 21. Associated Press Online, “Museum of the Moving Image to expand,”
Survey of Current Business, Oct. 2006. Audiovisual services definition: the New York, NY, 01/11/05.
affiliated and unaffiliated transactions between US and foreign residents 22. The New York Times, “Art house to get a campus,” New York, NY,
of film and television tape rentals, which covers the rights to display, 01/14/07.
reproduce, and distribute US motion pictures and television programming 23. The Times-Picayune, “Film producers not scared off, Katrina hasn’t
abroad. hurt state’s movie business,” New Orleans, LA, 10/12/06.
5. MPAA/LEK Piracy Loss Estimates Report 2005. 24. LosAngelesBusiness.com, “Lucas to give USC $175M,” Los Angeles,
6. Business Roundtable, Trade Resource Center, Trade and Jobs: Why CA, 09/20/06.
Trade and Investment Liberalization Creates More and Better Paying Jobs. 25. New York Construction, “Details unveiled for studio project,” New York,
7. State film commissions. There is some variation in inclusion definitions NY, 07/01/06.
based on each commission’s methodology. In California, official data is 26. Richmond Times-Dispatch, “Video firm Metro Productions moving to
not recorded by the film commission. Estimate is conservatively based on new facility,” Richmond, VA, 11/08/06.
published production reports and location permits. 27. California Construction Link, “Back from the dead in Downey”, July 1,
8. Chattanooga Times and Free Press, “State Film Incentives Await Ap- 2005. Los Angeles Times, “Hangars are Hollywood’s next big thing,” Los
proval,” Chattanooga, TN, 11/18/06 . Angeles, CA, 09/10/06.
9. Phoenix Business Journal, “Filmmaker expands Hollywood studio to 28. Albuquerque Journal, “Council Approves Lionsgate Package,” Albu-
Phoenix,” Laura Newpoff, Phoenix, Arizona, 05/01/06. Arizona Department querque, NM, 06/15/06.
of Commerce, “Analysis of the Film & Video Industry in Arizona,” Phoenix, 29. BusinessWire, “WorkshopLive opens Pittsfield recording and video
AZ, 12/2004. studio facility,” Pittsfield, MA, 06/10/05.
10. MPAA Worldwide Market Research. 30. Daily Variety, “Utah breaks ground on new facility,” 07/07/05.
11. Variety, “Global Shooting Guide: United States,” Josh Marks, 31. Star News, “FILM CLIPS / Planners of studio complexes study Wilm-
11/05/06. Connecticut Center for Economic Analysis, University of Con- ington,” Wilmington, NC, 12/29/05.
necticut, “The Economic Impact of Arts, Film, History, and Tourism in 32. Lucasfilm, Ltd. A New Vision for the Digital Arts.
Connecticut,” 2006. 33. Entertainment Industry Economics, by Harold L. Vogel, pg. 469. New
12. Variety, “Global Shooting Guide: United States,” Josh Marks, 11/5/06. York: Cambridge Press, 6th Ed.
13. “The Big Sky on The Big Screen Act: A Film Industry Incentive,” by 34. Ibid.
the Montana Film Office, Park Helena, MT, 4/20/05.
14. Las Vegas Review-Journal, “Pretty as the Pictures,” Chris Jones, Las
Vegas, NV, 1/28/06.
15. Herald News, “A ‘Sopranos’ effect; Area film, TV productions are a
growth industry,” Ed Beeson, Passaic County, NJ, 11/18/05. New Jersey
Motion Picture and Television Commission, “The 20-Per-Cent Solution,”
16. The Santa Fe New Mexican, “Hollywood on the Rio Grande,” Robert
17. Variety, “Global Shooting Guide: United States,” Josh Marks, 11/5/06.
New York Post, “N.Y. turns into Cinema City”, Hasani Gittens, New York,
18. Variety, “Global Shooting Guide: United States,” Josh Marks, 11/5/06.
Left top: White Noise, courtesy Universal Pictures
Left middle: The Constant Gardener, courtesy Focus Features; photo by Jaap Buitendijk
Left bottom: Munich, courtesy Universal Pictures
Above: The Office, courtesy of NBC Universal Photography Department
The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) de- For the purposes of the report:
veloped its report on The Economic Impact of the Motion
Picture and Television Production Industry using a number of Direct employment refers to individuals employed through
data sources, including Bureau of Labor statistics, Interna- production activities. It includes both regular full-time and
tional Trade Administration reports, and various other propri- freelance employees paid by the studios, networks, inde-
etary and publicly-available data. The following companies pendent production companies and commercial produc-
participated in an annual survey: ers directly, and indirectly through payroll companies. A
freelance employee is an individual who worked on a daily,
o Studios and Networks: The Walt Disney Company, weekly or project basis. Freelance employees include actors,
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc., Paramount Pictures, Sony directors, writers, camera operators, grips and other produc-
Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., tion personnel.
Universal Studios, Warner Bros., Dreamworks, NBC Inc.,
ABC Inc., CBS Broadcasting Inc. Indirect employment refers to individuals employed by
the industry through movie theaters, themed retailers and
o Payroll Companies: Cast & Crew Entertainment Ser- restaurants, video rental stores and tourist attractions. Ad-
vices, Entertainment Partners ditional individuals are accounted for through a wide cross-
section of employers such as florists, apparel and accessory
o Unions and Guild/Producer-Union Health Plans: retailers, automobile dealers, restaurants, caterers, dry
Directors Guild of America, Motion Picture Industry Health cleaners and thousands of other vendors who supplied the
Plan, Screen Actors Guild, Writers Guild of America production community.
These participants supply employment, payroll, vendor The information collected includes all motion picture,
expenditure and tax information to enable the Association to television, and commercial production functions, drawing a
build a comprehensive picture of the size, scope, and future comprehensive picture of the industry’s economic impact.
of the industry. The expenditure and payroll data is provided The survey was previously conducted in 1998 and 2003,
by zip code, allowing for the measurement of the economic focusing on California. 2005 is the first year the survey has
impact of the industry on a county, city, and community been conducted focusing on the entertainment industry’s
basis. The major guilds and unions, as well as their health economic impact on the entire country.
plans, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics provide additional
information on industry employment. The Bureau of Labor Statistics no longer publishes employ-
ment data based on the U.S. Standard Industry Classifica-
tion (SIC) codes for individual states. Therefore, for the
purpose of this study, the North American Industry Clas-
sification System (NAICS) had to be converted to SIC codes
using a combination of the 1997 Economic Census: Bridge
Between SIC and NAICS and the 1997 NAICS and 1987
SIC Correspondence Tables.
Since the category 7819 of “Allied Services to the Motion
Picture Production” was reallocated under NAICS into a
number of different industry classifications, correspondence
tables were used in an effort to capture comprehensive
employment figures. The same correspondence tables have
been used in both the 2003 and 2005 reports.
This Economic Impact Report was compiled under the
leadership of the Motion Picture Association of America with
the assistance of many important groups and individuals.
First thanks go to the participants in the study, listed below.
Individuals at each of these companies worked tirelessly
to provide the MPAA with the survey data. Without their
assistance, the report would not have been completed. The
The Walt Disney Company
Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc.
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp.
Universal Studios, Inc.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Library
CBS Broadcasting Inc.
AFTRA Health & Retirement Funds
Spelling Entertainment Group Inc.
The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers and
Cast & Crew
its president, J. Nicholas Counter who provided additional
L.E.K. Consulting, L.L.C. provided invaluable assistance and
guidance in reviewing the MPAA survey data.
Directors Guild of America - Producer Pension and Health
We would also like to thank the following for their contribu-
Motion Picture Industry Pension & Health Plans
Edward Jay Epstein, Author of The Big Picture, The New
Screen Actors Guild - Producers Pension and Health Plan
Logic of Money and Power in Hollywood
Special thanks to California Governor Arnold Schwarzeneg-
ger, Illinois Governor Rod R. Blagojevich, Louisiana Gover-
nor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco, Montana Governor Brian
Marian Rees, Independent Film Producer
Schweitzer, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, New
York Governor Eliot Spitzer, New York City Mayor Michael R.
Eve Troeh, Reporter for National Public Radio
Bloomberg, Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, and South
Carolina Governor Mark Sanford
Hal Vogel, Author of Entertainment Industry Economics, A
Guide for Financial Analysis
This publication includes images from CorelDRAW™ 8
which are protected by copyright laws of the US, Canada
Martine White, County Film Commissioner, Santa Barbara
and elsewhere. Used under license.
Conference & Visitors Bureau
Left: The Legend of Zorro, courtesy Columbia Pictures and Spyglass Entertainment; photo by Andrew Cooper
Above: The Wedding Date, courtesy Universal Pictures PAGE 26