House of Cards Threatens to Leave Maryland over Tax Credits

by Andrew Johnson

Netflix’s House of Cards may be a hit for D.C. area residents, but the show could soon leave the area unless Maryland, where the show is filmed, offers more in tax credits. The future of Frank Underwood’s and the rest of the show’s characters in Maryland hinge on a bill that would increase reimbursement funds to film and television production in the state, which the production company is urging top politicians to pass.

While Media Rights Capital, the California-based production company, has not stated how much it would like to receive in tax credits for its third season, state economists estimate providing $15 million should meet demands. Expected to start filming this spring, the production company has said it will delay filming until it learns the outcome.

“In the event sufficient incentives do not become available, we will have to break down our stage, sets, and offices and set up in another state,” an executive said in the letter to Democratic governor Martin O’Malley. The company also sent a letter to state house speaker Michael E. Busch, another Democrat.

The Washington Post reports that House of Cards brought nearly 6,000 jobs to the state and helped bring $250 million to Maryland’s economy. But some lawmakers are hesitant to provide more funding to the program, with one claiming that Maryland is “almost being held for ransom” by the show.