State gives $8M to ‘Nashville’ TV show

The ABC drama “Nashville” quietly secured economic incentives from the state last week as part of Gov. Bill Haslam’s amended budget, according to The Tennessean.

The Haslam administration allocated a combined $16 million to the Department of Economic and Community Development’s film and television incentive fund, and $8 million of that has been earmarked for “Nashville” to continuing filming in Music City. Lobbyists for the show’s production team have also been in talks with Mayor Karl Dean’s administration about additional incentives from Metro.

Unlike last year when representatives from “Nashville” kicked the tires on filming the show elsewhere amid down-to-the-wire negotiations with the state and Metro, discussions have gone smoothly this time. There’s still the question of whether ABC will pick up the music-focused series for a fourth season, and the production team feels the incentives are necessary to justify the costs of filming remotely.

“They’ve done a great job proving their economic value so we wanted to be supportive,” said Randy Boyd, ECD commissioner.

In addition to the $8 million for “Nashville,” $4 million will go to productions based in Memphis, $2 million to Knoxville productions, and $2 million will go to the recurring incentive fund for various productions across the state. Even with extra funding in Haslam’s budget, Tennessee’s film and television incentives pale in comparison to other states. Boyd pointed out that Louisiana gives approximately $270 million to lure productions there.