Filming in Greece
Greece has made co-production treaties with Canada, China, France, Israel, and is in a member of the Council of Europe Convention on Cinematographic Co-production. By providing a platform to make cinematographic co-productions more systematic and easier to construct, the Convention’s contribution to the co-production arena, and therefore to European cinema as a whole, has been fundamental to its success.
For more details on each co-production treaty and the benefits a co-production with Greece can provide, please get in touch with us.
The cash rebate amounts to 40% on the eligible expenses incurred in Greece. Producers have access to state aid once they pass the cultural test and spend at least €100,000 in the case of feature films, €60,000 in the case of documentaries, shorts and animated films, and €30,000 in the case of digital games. Moreover, there is a bigger flexibility for television series, starting at €15,000 per episode for TV series, with a minimum of all eligible expenses at €100,000. The incentive is administered by the National Centre of Audiovisual Media and Communication S.A. (EKOME S.A.), a state-owned legal entity governed by private law, in Greece.
Additional Incentives for higher budget projects
With the adoption of Law 4704/2020, the Greek cash rebate now amounts to 40%, while new provisions of subsidy for high budget productions concerning projects with eligible expenses over 8€mn, offer the possibility to foreign productions to include non-resident labor invoices. The value of foreign invoices may not exceed 50% of the total eligible expenses involved in the investment plan (VAT excluded), whereas the total state subsidy cannot exceed €12mn.
What is eligible for cash rebate?
The cash rebate for audiovisual works production supports feature films, documentaries, television series, animated films and digital games that choose Greece as location in either principal photography and production development and/or post-production stage. The rebate does not apply to music concerts, recorded performances, sports events and shows, reality shows, recorded events, commercials, infotainment shows etc.
Applications may be made for international and domestic productions and/or co-productions to obtain a 40% cash rebate on the sum of eligible expenses incurred in Greek territory.
Who is eligible for the cash rebate?
Eligible to apply for cash rebate in Greece are companies which are established or have a branch in the Greek territory and operate to produce audiovisual works, foreign producers of audiovisual works who are contracted with a company established or having a branch in Greek territory and operating for the purpose of producing audiovisual works, and companies for the production of audiovisual works in the context of cross-border production.
Important Note: Applications should be submitted only by the Greek partner company. However, beneficiary and applicant may not necessarily coincide. Namely, a beneficiary may be the Greek producer, co-producer or production service provider, or their foreign partner.
When is the cash rebate payable?
The cash rebate is paid to producers about six months after the completion of the production and/or post-production in Greece, provided that all prerequisites of the legislation have been met and after a detailly cost report by auditors.
Type of aid
The rebate can be combined with other aid schemes provided that total state financing (including the state aid by EKOME) shall not exceed:
- 50% for domestic productions or co-productions
- 60%, in case of cross-border productions with EU members
- 80%, in case of “difficult” audiovisual works as defined in Law No. 4487/2014
* EU funds (EURIMAGES or MEDIA) are not included in the above maximum rules
Minimum amount of eligible expenses:
- €100,000 for feature films
- €25,000 per TV episode & total minimum for TV series at 100,000€
- €15,000 per episode for TV series (70 episodes minimum + total minimum for TV series at 100,000€)
- €20,000 per episode (docuseries + total minimum for docuseries at €60,000)
- €60,000 for shorts and animated films
- €60,000 for documentaries
- €30,000 for digital games
Royalties (screenplay/soundtrack), fees (director, scriptwriter, two leading actors, producer): up to 35% of the total eligible cost. Insurance premiums and completion bond guarantees (5%); production service company’s fee (10%); fuel expenses up to 0,02; cash receipts up to 0,005. Per-diems. Travel expenses: from-to Greece +domestic. Dubbing/ subtitling.
Excluded: expenses for development, financial assets, “pilot” production fixed assets and their depreciation, marketing, promotion, and communication costs.
However, eligible are all pre-production expenses incurred after the application submission.
Cash Rebate Categories (Deviation, 20% per category)
- INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS EXPENSES
- CREW, CAST AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS’ FEES
- Cast (Main Cast / Stunts / Extras – Crowd / Stand – Ins)
- Executive producer
- Production department (production managers, assistants, location manager, production secretary, etc.)
- Assistant directors, script supervisor etc.
- Production accountants, auditors
- Camera department
- Lighting department & Gaffers
- Sound department
- Art department
- Costume department
- Special FX
- Makeup & Hair department
- Script consultants
- Other crew members
- PRODUCTION DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION
- Constructions & sets
- Set dressing
- Studios & site rentals
- Hair & make up supplies
- Picture Vehicles & animals
- TECHNICAL EQUIPMENT
- Technical equipment hires and consumables
- Lighting & Grips equipment hire and consumables
- Camera equipment hire and consumables
- Sound recording equipment hire and consumables
- Production supplies
- Hard disks
- TRAVEL, ACCOMMDATION AND CATERING
- Catering, meals
- Transportation costs (Vans, cars, fuel, tolls, parking, tickets, taxis, etc.)
- Travel costs (Air, train, bus, sea)
- Per diem
- EDITING – VFX – MONTAGE
- Post Film & Lab
- Post Sound
- Edit room
- Editorial purchases
- Other post costs
- OTHER COSTS
- General office expenses, Office rental & bills
- Stationery, prints, photocopies
- Telephone and internet
- Courier, post
- Casting expenses
Greece has a general VAT rate of 24% on all goods and services.
13% Reduced: Some foodstuffs; certain take away food; some non-alcoholic beverages; water supplies; some pharmaceutical products; hotel accommodation (bed and breakfast); certain social services; restaurant and catering and other.
6% Reduced: Some pharmaceutical products; some books, newspapers and periodicals; certain theatre and concert admissions; supply of electricity, gas and district heating.
VAT is NOT considered qualified Greek spend.
Applicants need apply no later than 10 days before the beginning of production and/or post-production works in Greece. We recommend submitting the application one to two earlier. Expenses count towards from the time of the application submission.
Applications are considered on a cultural test point-system basis, according to the type of audiovisual work. More specifically, for:
Fiction and documentaries: at least 20 out of 50 points should be met.
Animation: At least 16 out of 40 points should be met.
Digital Games: At least 16 out of 40 points should be met.
Difficult work: At least 10 out of 20 points on top of the above.
Application Process/ Deadlines
Applications are submitted via an electronic system guaranteeing smooth, fast and transparent processing. Applications may be submitted and processed all year long.