The public was told that to get the needed votes for the rescue bill, pork had to be attached.
But did folks really know it included ham for Hollywood? Buried deep in the pages of the $700 billion package are some gift-wrapped goodies for the entertainment industry.
The legislation eliminates a budget cap on the existing tax deduction, which had been limited to flicks costing less than $15 million. Big studio movies that have budgets exceeding $100 million now qualify.
In addition, films shot in the U.S. now qualify for a tax deduction that was given to domestic manufacturers in 2004, which capped the top tax rate at 32 percent instead of 35 percent.
For Hollywood’s portion of the bailout, according to a report published by the Joint Committee on Taxation, taxpayers will be footing the bill for $358 million in 2009 and $470 million by 2018.
In this "Toon Town" nightmare we’re suffering through, let’s hope and pray “that’s all folks.”
Disney Channel Star Becomes 'Lucy the Slut'
In a break of a different kind, Christy Carlson Romano, best known for her Disney Channel roles as Shia LaBeouf’s older sister on “Even Stevens” and the voice of the animated “Kim Possible,” is decimating the traditional Disney image.
Now the 24-year-old is gaining fame for her “Kate Monster” and “Lucy the Slut” parts in “Avenue Q,” a Broadway play that involves puppets in compromising positions.
“Avenue Q” is Romano’s first Broadway role since starring four years ago in “Beauty and the Beast.”
“I was like, ‘That’s it. I never want to do that again. I feel so dirty’ . . . And I would watch it every night and I’d go, ‘I can’t do that. I can’t do that.’ And then, basically, you just start laughing . . . You just get sucked into the world that is ‘Avenue Q,”’ the actress told The Associated Press.
About the requirement that she use puppets to express herself, Romano said, “Once you actually feel yourself integrated with the puppet’s movements, it’s like, ‘Omigod, that’s what that’s about? I can do that again.’ And then you continue to do it, and then it’s like you don’t even think about it.”
James Hirsen, J.D., M.A. in Media Psychology, is a media analyst, teacher of mass media and entertainment law at Biola University and professor at Trinity Law School.
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