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Local productions create media jobs in Chicago

Posted on January 31, 2018

The success of many local productions has brought media jobs to Chicago.

Local film and media production have yet again reached record levels in 2017 in Chicago. Last year, 580 individual film and media projects recorded an all-time high combined total of 2,404 production days, resulting in an estimated $423 million in job creation and expenditures. The Film Office issued a total of 2,127 permits in support of these projects, a 10 percent increase from 2016. Chicago has seen steady year over year increases in media production since 2011.

“With our talented residents, state-of-the-art facilities, and affordable services—not to mention our iconic skyline and the rich character and diversity of Chicago’s neighborhoods, the city continues to serve as the destination for film, television and media production year after year,” said Mayor Emanuel. “It is a testament to the depth and talent associated with Chicago’s local film industry that everything from large studio productions, to small independent films to commercials find a home in Chicago.”

The rise in Chicago filming and commercial production has boosted local spending and job creation, while increasing traffic for a wide range of local businesses, hotel rooms, office and warehouse leasing, vehicle and equipment leasing, construction supplies, and local tax revenues.

According to the Illinois Film Office–which awards a 30 percent tax credit to film–television and advertising productions for qualified expenditures of Illinois crew, goods and services, projects in 2017 generated an estimated $423 million in Illinois spending and employed 13,797 non-extra job hires along with $251 million in wages.

Film, television and media production continued with record level activity in 2017 with eight full-season series, plus portions of two others, filming throughout the year. NBC’s Chicago FireChicago PD and Chicago Med, FOX’s Empire, and Netflix’s Easy all renewed for additional seasons.

Showtime launched a new series, The Chi in addition to Shameless returning for several weeks of filming the seventh consecutive season. Amazon launched Electric Dreams and two new comedy shows, Pop TV’s Hot Date and the Comedy Central pilot South Sideboth filmed here in 2017 and are expected to go to series in 2018.