Hampton Roads Film Office
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Hampton Roads Film Office
430 World Trade Center
Norfolk, Virginia 23510

757.943.0993 cell
757.625.4696 office
757.625.4684 fax


In 2006 the Virginia General Assembly approved an appropriation to the Governor's Motion Picture Opportunity Fund. This performance-based incentive provides a cash rebate at the Governor’s discretion, taking into consideration length of filming, job creation, trainees hired and goods and services purchased. The rebate will be paid to qualified production companies at the end of physical production and payment will be issued upon completion of a report detailing Virginia expenditures.

For information on the fund, contact the Virginia Film Office Director Rita McClenny at 800.854.6233 or rmcclenny@virginia.org.

  • State sales and use tax exemptions and state and local lodging tax
  • Some state-owned locations provided free of location fee
  • The Film Office specializes in negotiating other free or low cost locations resulting in significant savings

Virginia is committed to helping contain production costs. Therefore most of the expenses incurred in the purchase of production-related supplies or equipment is exempt from the state’s 5% sales and use tax. This exemption is realized at the time of purchase and can be obtained by simply submitting a form to the merchant at the time of purchase. No paperwork needs to be filed upon completion of production and no rebates will be sent at the end of the tax year. The exemption is received immediately.

Listed below are some of the major items covered by the Sales and Use Tax Exemption.
  • Developing film including movie film
  • Transporting charges that are separately stated
  • Hotel and motel rooms that are occupied by a guest for 90 or more consecutive days
  • Repair services for which a separate charge is made
  • Camera film
  • Materials used to construct costumes
  • Materials used to construct props and scenery
  • Equipment rentals
  • Design supplies
  • Heating and Air conditioning used on the set
  • Scripts
  • Musical scores
  • Storyboards
  • Tapes
  • Drafting and art tables and supplies.
How you can use the Sales and Use Tax Exemption:
  1. Download the "Commonwealth of Virginia Sales and Use Tax Certificate of exemption” here.
  2. Give a copy of the form to each Virginia vendor that you use for allowable purchases.
  3. The vendor will not charge sales tax on any allowable items that you purchase, lease or rent for your Virginia project.
  4. The vendor should keep a copy of the form on file and you should only need to submit it one time. However, it's a good idea to keep extra copies with you

Virginia has a broad sales and use tax exemption which is applied at the time of purchase. No paperwork needs to be filed upon completion of production and no rebates will be sent at the end of the tax year. For further information, contact Mark Haskins, Virginia Department of Taxation, and (804) 371-2296, mark.haskins@tax.virginia.gov.

Go here for a copy of the Sales and Use tax Exemption Form.

After 90 days, those staying in a Virginia hotel or motel will be exempt from paying the state's 5% sales tax on the entire stay. You will pay the taxes to the hotel until your stay exceeds 90 days. After that time, you will no longer be charged state sales tax and the amount you have already paid will be credited back to your hotel or motel bill.

Many counties and cities in Virginia charge an additional lodging tax, often referred to as a transient occupancy tax, and the laws governing these taxes vary greatly by locality. As a general rule, however, most localities will exempt residents of hotels and motels from the tax after a stay of 30 days or more. To find out the specific regulations of the locality in which you are planning to stay, contact the Hampton Roads Film Office, or the Virginia Film Office.

For more information about all of Virginia’s tax regulations:

Mark C. Haskins
Virginia Department of Taxation
Post Office Box 27185
Richmond, Virginia 23261-7185
Phone - (804) 371-2296
FAX - (804) 371-2355
Website: www.tax.virginia.gov