How the US Film and TV Industry Is Driving Economic Growth

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In the United States, the film and television industries support a large number of jobs and make a key contribution to society in general. Specifically, this industry supports 2.6 million jobs, pays out $177 billion in total wages and comprises over 93,000 businesses, according to an analysis of the most recent economic figures released today by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA).

Of the 2.6 million total jobs supported by the industry, direct jobs related to the production and distribution of films and television shows totaled 927,000 (340,000 direct production jobs and 587,000 jobs direct distribution jobs).

These are high-quality jobs, with salaries that are 47% higher than the national average for direct jobs in total, and 65% higher for direct production jobs.

Of the 93,000 businesses that make up the film and television industry across the country, 87% are small businesses, employing fewer than 10 people. In all, the industry makes $44 billion in payments to over 250,000 local businesses. The industry also increases the tax base, generating $29.4 billion in public revenues from sales, state and federal taxes.

On the global stage, the U.S. film and television industry generates $17.2 billion in exports and has a trade surplus of $10.3 billion, or 4% of the total U.S. trade surplus in services.

Charles Rivkin, board chair and chief executive of the MPAA, commented:

The impact of the U.S. film and television industry reaches far beyond well-known creative hubs, such as Los Angeles, New York City and Atlanta. This industry supports jobs and businesses in all 50 states and is also highly competitive globally – generating $17.2 billion in exports and a positive balance of trade in every major market in the world.

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