Banshees of Inisherin co-producer got €72.5m in Irish tax credits

Metropolitan Films International is the largest operator in the Irish co-production sector

Metropolitan Films International's co-production credits include Banshees of Inisherin starring Colin Farrell and Barry Keoghan. Photograph: Searchlight

The co-producer of the multi Oscar-nominated Banshees of Inisherin received €72.5 million in Revenue movie and TV corporation tax credits last year.

Metropolitan Films International Ltd and subsidiaries is the largest operator in the co-production of movies in the State.

New accounts show that the amount the Wicklow-based production group received in Section 481 tax credits in the 12 months to the end of April 2022 more than doubled to €72.5 million from €34 million in the prior 12 months.

The €72.5 million is also a significant hike on the corporation tax credits the business has received in recent years – €22 million in 2019, €25.47 million in 2018 and €37.48 million in 2017.

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The main activity of the group is producing films and TV series in Ireland, primarily through the co-production of incoming European and international studio projects.

As the group ramped up production last year, its revenues increased by 93.5 per cent from €71.9 million to €139.2 million.

The group’s co-production credits include Banshees of Inisherin, starring the Oscar-nominated Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, Barry Keoghan and Kerry Condon.

Covid pushes spend on first series of Valhalla above €55mOpens in new window ]

Other credits include Netflix hit, Valhalla; RTÉ's Kin and Matt Damon’s The Last Duel.

One of the driving forces behind the business was distinguished producer, James Flynn who died aged 57 earlier this year.

Last year, Mr Flynn oversaw the numbers employed by the business’s subsidiaries increasing from 424 to 783 and its wage bill more than doubling from €24.2 million to €53.8 million.

The individual tax breaks for each production are not disclosed in the accounts though figures published by Revenue show that series one of Valhalla qualified for Revenue 481 movie tax reliefs in the band between €10 million and €30 million.

Underlining the increased production at Metropolitan Films last year, the firm’s production spend last year doubled from €105.29 million to €211.24 million.

The firm recorded a pretax loss of €72.6 million, but the corporation tax credit of €72.5 million resulted in a modest post-tax €80,779 loss.

The accounts – signed off on Monday, March 27th by directors, Morgan O’Sullivan and Juanita Wilson – show that the cash funds last year increased from €12.85 million to €21.32 million.

The Revenue Commissioners confirmed earlier this year that the overall value of payments made under the Section 481 film corporation tax credit scheme in 2022 was €127.3 million.

The 2022 total was €9.8 million down on the value of film corporation tax credits totalling €137.1 million in 2021.

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan is a contributor to The Irish Times