The Sooner State should be on the radar of any filmmaker looking to shoot in America’s heartland, as it offers one of the highest base rebate percentages in the nation at 35%. An additional 2% can be obtained by utilizing Oklahoma’s bustling music and recording scene in the production, and with a low minimum spend of only $50K (at least $25K of which must be local spend), even small independent films will find the Oklahoma incentive easily accessible. There are no caps for how much a single project may obtain in rebates, but keep in mind the program has an annual cap of $4 million, distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis.
An extremely wide breadth of filming locations can also be found among the 12 eco-regions, with everything from the trademark great plains and sweeping prairies to the unexpected lush forests, expansive plateaus and sand dunes. For any project coming to the state, film-friendly Oklahoma businesses are eager to offer up heartland hospitality to productions, big and small.
Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program
The Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program offers a cash rebate of 35-37% on qualifying Oklahoma expenditures to film and television productions filming in the state. The rebate is extended to film, television and commercial productions. The rebate currently has a $4 million rolling cap per fiscal year (July 1-June 30) and has been renewed through 2024. There is no per-project cap, but each production must have a minimum budget of $50,000 and spend $25,000 in qualified Oklahoma spend. Rebate funds are pre-qualified for eligible applicants on a first-come, first-served basis.
The rebate offers a base percentage of 35% on qualified Oklahoma expenditures. If a minimum of $20,000 is spent on music that has been recorded in Oklahoma by an Oklahoman or on Oklahoma music production costs, an additional 2% is added to the total rebate on qualified Oklahoma expenditures, for a total of 37%.
Qualifying Oklahoma expenditures subject to the rebate can be defined as taxable transactions conducted in Oklahoma and related to the production, to including:
- Wages paid to Oklahoma talent and crew, including employer paid payroll taxes (SUI, FUI, FICA, and Workers Comp) and union fringe
- Wages paid to below-the-line Oklahoma Expatriates (as defined in guidelines)
- Wages paid to above-the-line loan outs and L.L.C.’s registered to do business with the Oklahoma Secretary of State’s Office (cannot comprise more than 25% of the total rebate). There is no loan out withholding
- Story or screenplay costs paid to an Oklahoman or entity with an Oklahoma tax liability (also subject to 25% cap)
- Expenditures for purchases through Oklahoma vendors
- Lodging accommodations
- Building and facility rental
- Catering services, food and restaurant expenses
- Equipment rental
- Materials rental or purchase (including construction, operations, wardrobe and related services)
- Location fees
- Living expenses and per diem for Oklahoma filming dates (for both residents and non-residents)
- Transportation and vehicle rental
- Overnight courier services
- Airfare for travel originating or landing in Oklahoma
- Contracted services, including required third party CPA review by pre-certified Oklahoma accounting firm
- Production insurance
- Legal counsel
- Payroll companies
- Oklahoma music
The Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program statute is found in Oklahoma Statute Title 68 Section 3621 through 3626.
The production company must provide proof of complete financing prior to commencement of principal photography. Proof that 50% of funding is in place is due 60 days prior to the start of principal photography, and proof that complete funding is in place is due 30 days prior to the start of principal photography.
The production company must provide proof of general liability insurance with minimum coverage of $1 million, and a workers’ compensation policy pursuant to state law.
If the film is not bonded, no rebate money will be released until evidence is provided that all Oklahoma crew and vendors have been paid, along with evidence that there are no liens against any production company in the state of Oklahoma.
The project must have a minimum budget of $50,000 and spend a minimum of $25,000 in Oklahoma.
Film and television projects are required to include a screen credit to the Oklahoma Film + Music Office.
A third party CPA review of the rebate claim is required for all pre-qualified projects.
Projects deemed as child pornography in subsection A 1024.1 of Title 21 of Oklahoma Statutes, or as obscene material as defined in paragraph 1 of subsection B of section 1024.1 of Title 21 of Oklahoma Statutes, do not qualify for the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program.
For information on applying for the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program, please review the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program Guidelines + Instructions for Application.
Have a question? Please review our FAQ page.
For additional questions about the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program, please contact OF+MO’s Director, Tava Maloy Sofsky, or OF+MO’s Deputy Director, Jeanette Stanton, at 405.522.9635 or email at Tava.Sofsky@TravelOK.com or Jeanette.Stanton@TravelOK.com.
The Oklahoma Film + Music Office is pleased to accept applications for productions seeking to film in Oklahoma and utilize the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program.
Once you have reviewed the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program Guidelines and Instructions for Application, the following forms will serve as your official application.
Acrobat Reader or similar is needed to view PDF documents.
- Welcome to Oklahoma (PDF)
- Guidelines & Instructions for Application (PDF)
- Quick Reference Timeline (PDF)
Eligibility Application Forms:
- Form C – Declaration of Residency (PDF)
- Form D – Oklahoma Production Service Entities – Due Diligence (PDF)
Final Application Forms:
- Form E – Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Final Rebate Application (PDF)
- Form B – Statement of Budget (PDF)
*If you prefer to submit your Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Application and other required documents via email or hand delivery using downloadable PDF forms, please contact Tava.Sofsky@TravelOK.com and Jeanette.Stanton@TravelOK.com.
The list below indicates the films that have been conditionally prequalified to utilize the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program.
This list is subject to change based on compliance with the rebate guidelines.
The Woman at Jacob’s Well (37%)
September 1, 2016 – October 15, 2017
Pioneer Woman (TV) (35%)
July 11 – December 21, 2017
Sleeping in Plastic (35%)
Red Productions LLC
October 16, 2017 – February 12, 2018
Last Exorcist (35%)
Thriller Films, LLC
October 17-28, 2017
The Bygone (37%)
The Bygone, LLC
October 27 – December 4, 2017
Desolate Beauty (37%)
Mountain Top Entertainment INC.
October 30 – November 23, 2017
Eric Gable/Michael Lynch/Fiend Film LLC
October 30 – December 15, 2017
Skate God (35%)
A-Mac Placement LLC
January 2-20, 2018
Unplanned Movie LLC
January 17 – February 28, 2018
Revised September 7, 2017
Point of Purchase Sales Tax Exemption
The Point of Purchase Sales Tax Exemption exempts qualified film productions from paying sales tax on property or services related to the film production. There is no minimum budget or expenditure requirement to take advantage of this incentive. The state’s current sales tax is 4.5%. Local taxes, which vary from city to city and county to county, average between 3% and 4%.
This Point of Purchase Sales Tax Exemption cannot be used in conjunction with the Oklahoma Film Enhancement Rebate Program.
The Point of Purchase Sales Tax Exemption is facilitated by the Oklahoma Tax Commission. Download and complete the Point of Purchase Sales Tax Exemption form HERE (pdf). Submit to the Oklahoma Tax Commission by mailing the completed form to the following address:
Oklahoma Tax Commission
P.O. Box 26920
Oklahoma City, OK, 73126