New Report Blasts TV Show “Nashville” for Costing Taxpayers More Than $45 Million

New Report Blasts TV Show “Nashville” for Costing Taxpayers More Than $45 Million

As the sixth and final season of Nashville comes to a close on July 26, research organization the Beacon Center has released a report on the “ineffectiveness of film incentives in Tennessee,” citing that Nashville cost Tennessee taxpayers more than $45 million.

According to its profile, “The Beacon Center is an independent, nonprofit, and nonpartisan research organization dedicated to providing expert empirical research and timely free market solutions to public policy issues in Tennessee.”

Here’s what the Beacon’s new report had to say about Nashville, in part:

No project exemplifies the bad public policy of [movie production incentives, MPIs] in Tennessee more clearly than the ABC/CMT television show Nashville. The show, which has now been cancelled twice in three years due to poor ratings, has received the most taxpayer money of any project, totaling $45 million in state incentives alone (including millions more in local taxpayer incentives). Even worse, the show’s six seasons received the largest six individual Tennessee Entertainment Commission grants of any project in state history. The smallest incentive, $5.7 million given for the sixth and final season, was still awarded after CMT announced the show would be permanently cancelled. The show Nashville also serves as an example of how corporations or sports teams hold cities and states hostage after receiving taxpayer money. After the show’s second season, ABC producers explored moving filming to Austin, Texas, unless the show received more in Tennessee taxpayer incentives for the third season. However, this came immediately after less than 50 percent of season two’s budget was spent in Tennessee, a series low.

 

For a show named after a Tennessee city, outside of its first season Nashville was hardly dominating the Tennessee film industry. Also of note is that with the increased production budget after the first season, the percentage of expenditures that were qualified Tennessee expenditures dropped dramatically. The show also demonstrates that if a taxpayer-incentivized television show becomes even somewhat popular and scales up production and budget, the vast majority of a project’s growth will inevitably occur elsewhere, likely in Hollywood, where actors and actresses are more likely to reside and where support staff is easier to obtain. Thus, even a “successful” TV series will result in Tennessee taxpayers subsidizing Hollywood and other out of state locales. While fans may miss the show after it received its final death in July 2018, Tennessee taxpayers should breathe a sigh of financial relief.
Event though Nashville spent more than $251 million for goods and services in Tennessee over its six seasons, the Beacon is one entity that won’t miss Deacon, Juliette, Scarlett, Will and the rest of the gang.

photo by Jason Simanek

Daily Dose

Dustin Lynch & MacKenzie Porter talk about “Thinking ‘Bout You”

Dustin Lynch & MacKenzie Porter talk about “Thinking ‘Bout You”

Dustin Lynch recalls the exact moment during the writing of “Thinking ‘Bout You” when they thought it could work as a collaboration, “We realized, after we got to the chorus, wait a second, this is the duet moment we’ve been looking for. We can have the girl on the other end of the line, and her come in on the second verse, and now it’s a conversation. And I do think that’s why it’s so approachable and people relate to it and those phone calls can be life changing sometimes.”

As the song is knocking on the door to the number-one spot on the country music airplay chart, MacKenzie Porter shares that she and Dustin haven’t had a lot of opportunities to perform the hit song together, “The crazy part is like, we’ve actually probably sang it separately, more than we’ve sang it together, because our touring schedules are different. So then when we do get to do it together, it’s like oh yeah this is how, this is how it’s supposed to go, I’m not supposed to sing Dustin’s first verse, which I do in my own show. It just feels so natural.”

Photo Courtesy of Dustin Lynch & MacKenzie Porter