Industry Snapshots

Film & Creative Services

Puerto Rico is already a world-class destination for film and commercial production. Now, it is set up to become a major hub for all types of creative industries. From incentives to inspiration, it's all here for creative projects to flourish. It is expanding on this success and attracting and other creative projects.

If you’re looking for great locations, scenic adaptability, technological resources and international award-winning talent to help transform a vision into reality, look no further. And don’t forget the best part of the story: one of the most attractive tax incentives package in the world. Whether you're thinking creatively or financially, think Puerto Rico.

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Lights, Camera, Business

Puerto Rico is one of Hollywood's favorite film destinations. With about 70% of foreign shoots there portraying remote places, the Island has thrived lately thanks to a host of factors.

With one of the most attractive film tax incentives in the world, Puerto Rico averages about eight feature foreign films a year. Nevertheless, its scenery is just one aspect of why, when it comes to filming, Puerto Rico definitely is the all-star island. If it is versatility you want, the island offers a vast array of exotic locations to portray remote places such as Kuwait, Iraq, Dubai, Brazil, Colombia and Chile, as well as more familiar settings like Miami and Los Angeles.

The reasons why you should bring your production to Puerto Rico are best explained by our Business Star Proposition.

1: World-Class Workforce

Puerto Rico has hosted more than 180 foreign shoots since 1999, and local crews have become skilled at servicing a range of productions, including such effects-laden tent-poles as Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, action vehicles like the James Bond film Golden Eye and TV series such as the Showtime dramedy The Big C. Another benefit: English is an official language in Puerto Rico.

"We traveled in with our department heads and most of our camera crew but then staffed the remainder of crew locally. They were extremely helpful and hardworking." Laura Benson, Production Manager on The Big C

2: Global Experience

Our skilled crews have worked extensively in productions of all budgets, including Hollywood blockbusters, indie films, European films, and Latin American films. They are also equally experienced in working for film, television and commercials.

3: Location, Location, Location

As Puerto Rico's tax credits draw more productions, it's becoming more common for the Island to double for other locations. Settings in and around the capital of San Juan were depicted as Rio de Janeiro in the action flick Fast Five and for the filming of the gambling drama Runner, Runner, starring Ben Affleck, Puerto Rico stands for Costa Rica.

Puerto Rico consists of a main island surrounded by a cluster of smaller ones. As one might expect, Puerto Rico appeals to tourists thanks to a number of stunning locations. But its best offering to filmmakers is diversity: from lush mountains and white-sand beaches to 16th century colonial-era architecture and modern, urban settings. Puerto Rico also features proximity to the U.S., just 3.5 hours away from the East Coast and 6 hours away from the West Coast by plane, producers get to reap the benefits of rebates while saving money on travel.

4: Attractive Tax Incentives

Puerto Rico boasts one of the most robust film incentive programs in all of Latin America, the United States, and the world. The Island offers a 20 percent tax credit on payments made to qualified nonresident individuals, including Above-the-Line and Below-the-Line. Sweetening the deal is a 40% tax incentive on payments made to Puerto Rican qualified residents. As an example, Johnny Depp's The Rum Diary, which spent $20 million on location in Puerto Rico, received an $8 million credit in return.

This can be bundle with the 4% corporate tax rate offered by the Export Service Act for qualifying entities.

5: United States Legal Framework

Puerto Rico, as a Commonwealth of the United States, enjoys the benefits of United States labor, safety, minimum wage and federal laws. The U.S. dollar is its currency and U.S. intellectual property and banking laws apply. What's more, Puerto Rico abides by the same labor laws, and United States citizens need no passport to get there.

"People don't necessarily register that this is a U.S. territory. It doesn't present the same headaches as filming in a foreign country." James Holt, Executive Producer of The Men Who Stare at Goats with George Clooney.

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Creative Export Center

The Puerto Rico Film Industry Economic Incentives Act (Act No. 27) solidifies the island's position as one of the leading jurisdictions for the production of film, television and other media projects. It also recognizing the importance of complementing a low cost structure with dedicated, state-of-the-art infrastructure and provides numerous incentives for the development and operation of media production related infrastructure. Tax Benefits under Act No. 27 includes:

  • 25% infrastructure tax credit on development or expansion costs

Eligible projects:

  • National and International Commercials
  • Feature Films, Short Films and Documentaries
  • Television Programs, Mini Series and Series in Episodes
  • Music Videos, Live Performances, Soundtrack Recording and Dubbing
  • Videogames

Additionally, the Puerto Rico Export Services Act (Act No. 20) provides incentives for the exportation of Creative Services. Tax Benefits under Act No. 20 includes:


  • Exemptions guaranteed for 20 years, renewable for 10 more under certain conditions

Learn more about the Puerto Rico Film Incentives Act and the Puerto Rico Export Service Act.

Main Industry Subsectors

Puerto Rico offers top-notch services within all the main Film & Creative Services subsectors:

Film Production

This subsector is made up of production and distribution companies. Film distributors acquire distribution rights and distribute film and video productions to theaters, television networks, and cable operators.

Film Post Production

This industry subsector is made up of companies that offer services that include editing, film tape transfers, titling, closed captioning and computer-produced graphics, animation and special effects, as well as developing and processing motion picture film.

Games and Software development

Puerto Rico has a significant source of talent for the video game industry with five (5) key universities providing education related to video games. Over 800 degrees awarded yearly in computer and information sciences. More than 500 students graduate each year in visual & performing arts institutional programs. With approximately 6,700 person talent pool in related video game industry occupations. Puerto Rico’s Competitive annual wage comparison in the video games industry represents up to 51% less than Florida and California jurisdictions. Videogame companies can benefit from Act 23, Act 72, and Act 20.

Integrated Record Production and Distribution

Businesses in this subsector release, promote and distribute sound recordings and create compact discs and digital streaming recordings.

Live Recording

This subsector records audio in live events such as concerts, conferences, and festivals.

Contact Us to learn more about opportunities in Film & Creative Services.

Learn more about the Puerto Rico Film Incentives Act and the Puerto Rico Export Service Act.