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New Zealand has awarded Amazon tax subsidies worth more than $100 million to film its upcoming "Lord of the Rings" television series in the country, government officials said Friday.
Amazon Studios qualified for New Zealand’s "Screen Production Grant," which covers 20% of filming costs. New Zealand added an additional 5% benefit for the "Lord of the Rings" series.
Officials said Amazon will spend about $465 million to produce the first season, which is currently filming in New Zealand. As a result, the company will receive roughly $116 million toward production costs from New Zealand.
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"The agreement with Amazon … generates local jobs and creates work for local businesses," New Zealand Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash said in a statement first obtained by Reuters. "It will enable a new wave of international tourism branding and promotion for this country."
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Grant terms for individual future seasons of the show have yet to be determined. Nash told Radio New Zealand that the subsidies are open to any international production company that meets certain benchmarks.
Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the announcement.
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The "Lord of the Rings" series is one of the most expensive productions in television history. Once complete, it will air on the Amazon Prime Video streaming platform. HBO’s "Game of Thrones" cost about $100 million per season, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
The "Lord of the Rings" film trilogy was also filmed in New Zealand.
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