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Hungary's film industry sees huge upturn

Money pouring into Hungary's film industry has so far this year tripled, compared to the amount invested for the whole of 2004, business paper Világgazdaság reported. The commanding growth owes mainly to foreign productions renting out Hungarian facilities and crew, which has added an extra Ft 10 bln, or € 40 mln, to the industry's coffers compared to last year. The 20% tax holiday is already attracting top talent from abroad. Steven Spielberg has been shooting his latest big budget film and other distinguished directors are also on the way, attracted by the building of what will be the biggest sound stage in the world in a village outside the capital. There is a positive rub-off for production houses at home, too. Revenues at Mafilm Rt, a company held by the state's holding company ÁPV, have risen by 30-35% to over Ft 2 bln (€ 8mln) this year, while revenues from domestic film production have risen to Ft 5 bln from Ft 3.5 bln last year.