The New Zealand Screen Production Rebate, originally named the New Zealand Screen Production Grant, is a Government-backed screen incentives scheme, first introduced on 1 April 2014. Eligible productions can access a 20% cash rebate on Qualifying New Zealand Production Expenditure. A Post, Digital and Visual Effects (PDV) Rebate is also available.
The current Criteria is dated 1 November 2023 and can be downloaded here or from the links at the bottom of this page, which also includes FAQs, application forms and other supporting information.
The Criteria also includes a redeveloped 5% Uplift. Further information and documents can be found here.
- Live Action Productions that start Principal Photography on or after 1 November 2023 will be assessed under the NZSPR Criteria for International Productions dated 1 November 2023.
- PDV Productions that start PDV Activity on or after 31 August 2023 will also be assessed under the NZSPR Criteria for International Productions dated 1 November 2023.
- Live Action Productions that started Principal Photography before 1 November 2023, and PDV Productions that started PDV Activity before 31 August 2023 will be assessed under the NZSPG Criteria for International Productions dated 1 July 2017 (Updated 2019).
If you are unsure which criteria applies to your production, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The New Zealand Film Commission administers the NZSPR for International Productions on behalf of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.
The purpose of the NZSPR for International Productions is to incentivise the production of foreign and domestic large budget films, television and other format productions in New Zealand in order to provide economic and industry development benefits to New Zealand.
The purpose of the PDV Rebate is to specifically foster capacity and new business development for large budget PDV Productions in New Zealand.
A domestic rebate is also available to New Zealand productions and Official Co-productions. Click here for more information.
Feature films, television and other non-feature film formats are eligible. Productions applying for the Post, Digital and Visual Effects Rebate are also required to be an eligible format.
See Clauses 8 and 9 of the Criteria for full details on formats, including ineligible formats.
|Feature film (theatrical release)||NZ$15 million|
|Television and other non-feature||NZ$4 million|
Post, Digital and Visual Effects Rebate
General Eligibility Requirements
Special Purpose Vehicle
Applicants must be a special purpose vehicle set up solely to make the production in New Zealand, unless they fall within one of the exceptions set out in clause 12.2 of the Criteria.
The applicant must be a New Zealand resident company or partnership, or a foreign corporation with a fixed establishment in New Zealand for tax purposes.
The applicant for the Rebate must be the entity responsible for all activities in making the production in New Zealand.
Other Rebates and New Zealand Incentives
A production cannot receive an International Rebate and a New Zealand Rebate, or any other New Zealand Government film finance or tax incentive in relation to the production.
Qualifying New Zealand Production Expenditure (QNZPE)
QNZPE is eligible spend incurred by the applicant on the production in New Zealand. In general, this means:
- services provided in New Zealand;
- the use of land located in New Zealand;
- goods purchased, hired or leased in New Zealand, provided they are sourced from within New Zealand;
- goods sourced from overseas, provided those goods are not otherwise available in New Zealand, are located in New Zealand during the making of the production and are purchased, hired or leased from a New Zealand Resident who typically supplies that type of good.
QNZPE also includes the fees and expenses of non-New Zealand residents who work on the production in New Zealand, provided (in the case of non-cast members) they work on the production for at least 14 days in total.
Further details, including exclusions to QNZPE, are set out in section 3 of the Criteria.
Post, Digital and Visual Effects (PDV) Rebate
QNZPE necessarily related to PDV Activity includes but is not limited to:
- the fees and expenses of personnel working on PDV Activity
- the hire of studio and office space for PDV Activity
- the purchase and hire of equipment used for PDV Activity
- the depreciation of assets used for PDV Activity.
For a detailed list of PDV Activity please see Appendix 2 of the Criteria.
To be eligible for the Rebate, all applicants must register with the Film Commission within the relevant timeframe:
- For Live Action productions: before commencing Principal Photography in New Zealand.
- For PDV Productions: within 20 working days of a “qualifying bid”* being accepted by the applicant; or
- If a PDV Production does not initially meet the NZ$250,000 QNZPE threshold, it can be registered after PDV activity has commenced if registration takes place within 20 working days of a “qualifying bid” taking the QNZPE above the minimum expenditure threshold, being accepted by the applicant.
See Clause 26 of the Criteria for full details on registration.
Registration forms are available here.
International Productions that do not register within the relevant timeframe will not be eligible for the NZSPR.
* a “qualifying bid” is a bid by a supplier to carry out PDV Activity that would result in the aggregate QNZPE for the production exceeding the NZ$250,000 threshold.
Once a production is registered, the production may apply for a Provisional Certificate, but this is not mandatory. A Provisional Certificate is not a guarantee that the production will receive Final (or Interim) certification, but it does indicate whether the production is likely to meet the eligibility criteria. Provisional application forms are available here and the assessment process approximately six weeks. Once issued, a Provisional Certificate will lapse after six months unless the production commences Principal Photography within that time.
Note: productions intending to seek the 5% Uplift must apply for a Provisional Ceritificate using this form.
Final applications can be made once all QNZPE on the production is paid, or each time the QNZPE reaches NZ$50 million or more (this is an Interim application). Final application forms are available here.
Final application forms for productions applying under the 2019 Criteria are available here.
Final applications must be made within six months from Completion of the production.
Final applications must include an independent auditor’s report from one of the following approved auditors:
- Ernst & Young
- Grant Thornton
If you wish to use a different auditor, please email email@example.com for approval.
Interim and Final applications are sent to the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) for review against the applicant’s tax records and to an Independent Consultant for assessment of QNZPE. The application is then presented to the Rebate Panel for approval.
The Interim and Final application process takes up to three months. Once approved, payment is generally made within 10 business days once an invoice is submitted to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.
All applications should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org
On-screen Credit, Logo and Promotional Materials
The completed production must include an on-screen end credit and New Zealand Film Commission logo. Unless otherwise agreed, the required credit text is:
The filmmakers acknowledge the assistance of the New Zealand Government’s Screen Production Rebate
Please email email@example.com to obtain the current logo. Please note, unless otherwise agreed with the NZFC, the logo should only be used in conjunction with the end credit text.
Please see the Promotional Materials Schedule for information on required deliverables to be provided with your Final application.
If you have any further queries, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Incentives Team on +64 4 382 7680.
Images: M3GAN (courtesy of Blumhouse), Black Adam (courtesy of Warner Bros.)
Decisions regarding the redevelopment of the 5% Uplift were made by the Ministers for Arts, Culture and Heritage, Finance and Economic Development in July 2023. Publication of the criteria and guidance is the implementation of decisions made and publicly communicated before the start of the Caretaker Government period and is consistent with CO (23) 10 Government Decision Making during the Period of Caretaker Government.