WARSAW: The newly introduced Polish cash rebate offers generous 30% of get back funds for Polish and international productions. Check our special FNE guide to see how you can apply for the funding from the Polish Film Institute.
In order to benefit from the support offered by the new cash rebate incentive introduced in Poland, check if your production and company are eligible for getting the funds in PART I of this guide.
Eligible projects must be feature films, animated films or documentaries, as well as fiction, animated and documentary series. The financial support in Poland pairs with a diverse range of locations and access to an experienced pool of local talents, as well as state-of-the-art facilities and sound stages.
To see the overview of the latest accomplishments in Polish film production check the FNE 2018 Polish market analysis.
The Qualification Test and Support Thresholds
There are two basic conditions to access the cash rebate funds – the production must pass the qualification test and meet minimum spends thresholds. The qualification test entails special criteria for the project to fulfil: the use of Polish or European cultural heritage in the film; location of the plot of the film in Poland; production of the film on the territory of Poland and participation in the audiovisual production of Polish artists, crews and service providers as well as the use of Polish film infrastructure.
Specific financial thresholds have been set up for various genres of production varying from 70,000 EUR / 300,000 PLN for documentary feature up to 595,000 EUR / 2.5 m PLN for feature film for projects applying in 2019. To learn about all the thresholds check the table on the Polish Film Institute's website. The maximum budget share of public funds together with the amount of support may not exceed: 50% for a domestic coproduction, 60% for an international coproduction, 70% for a difficult film with limited commercial value and addressed to children under 12 years old and 70% for a difficult film with limited commercial value and promoting Polish historical or cultural heritage in the world.
One project can receive up to 3.4 m EUR / 15 m PLN of support and one applicant can get up to 4.6 m EUR / 20 m PLN of support annually. There is no possibility of re-applying for additional support for the same project. The Polish costs eligible for reimbursement cannot exceed 80% of the total budget.
When to Apply?
The scheme works on a "first come, first served" basis throughout the year, so the application timing is crucial. Production companies interested in receiving support should apply at the earliest six months before and no later than two months before the start of the work covered by the support.
To successfully apply for the cash rebate, the producer must present documentation on at least 75% of production costs that would be reimbursed under this scheme as well as 75% of the total planned budget of the film. The Polish Film Institute has 28 days to assess the application. In case of deficiencies or errors in application, the Institute returns it with information about deficiencies or errors and the possibility of re-submission.
Once the annual support limit is reached, the Institute creates a waiting list of applications, which will be considered in case of appearance of additional funds.
How to Apply?
Before you start the application process visit the Polish Film Institute's website at www.pisf.pl and read the available information materials. Please note that the applications are made only in Polish and in order to submit it you must have a Polish partner or registered activity in Poland. The applications are submitted only electronically and each applicant needs to have a qualified electronic signature in order to submit it. The application must be accompanied with necessary attachments, including: the completed qualification test, script, production schedule, financing plan, etc. (a complete list of attachments is available on the Polish Film Institute's website).
There is an application fee in the amount of 0.05% of the value of the requested support, but not more than 230 EUR / 1,000 PLN.
Within 28 calendar days from the date of notifying the applicant about the granting of financial support, the Institute concludes an agreement for financial support with the applicant. When the agreement is signed, the Institute transfers funds specified in the contract to the escrow account which is opened by the applicant. The applicant will be able to access the funds when the works covered by the support are finished and report submitted to the Institute audited and accepted.