Filmed in and around Montana’s Bitterroot Valley, the fourth season of the hit TV series “Yellowstone” brought in more than $70 million in additional state spending, according to a study by the Bureau of Business and Economics. Research from the University of Montana.
The study revealed a wide range of impacts due to “Yellowstone,” the Paramount worldwide hit television series starring Kevin Costner. This included 527 permanent in-state jobs, not including the 624 Montana residents who were employed during filming as extras.
The show generated $25.3 million in annual personal income for Montana households. Additionally, there was $85.8 million in additional gross receipts for Montana businesses and non-commercial organizations.
Additionally, annual state government revenue has increased by $10.6 million, according to BBER Director Patrick Barkey.
“The production activities of the fourth season of “Yellowstone” in Montana have supported jobs and incomes far beyond its own economic footprint, making Montana’s economy bigger and more prosperous than it is. would have been otherwise,” Barkey said. “The high-paying nature of production-related jobs and the considerable demand for locally produced goods and services are the main reasons why the economic impacts have been so significant.”
The report found that Montana has seen growth in television and film over the past 10 years, with 122 productions filmed in 2019. Some of those films were eligible for the tax credit. More than 30 states, including Montana, currently offer some form of tax credit, often transferable, to studios in exchange for locating business in their states.
The BBER study on “Yellowstone” was sponsored by the MEDIA Coalition of Montana and Paramount.
“We felt it was important to have accurate data on the impacts of the media industry in Montana,” said Steve Grover, CEO of Montana Studios and co-founder of the MEDIA Coalition of Montana.
During five months of filming in western Montana, the studio’s significant expenses, from lodging and car rentals to veterinary and animal services, benefited a wide range of Montana businesses.
“The business we’ve gotten from ‘Yellowstone’ has really helped our bottom line,” said Lynn-Wood Fields, owner of Montana Media Center, a locally-based service provider.
Barkey said the economic gains should continue if Montana becomes a more regular site for large-scale film productions with a scale and scope similar to “Yellowstone.”
To view the full study results, visit the Bureau of Business and Economic Research website at www.bber.umt.edu. Based at the UM College of Business, BBER was founded in 1948 to monitor economic and business conditions in Montana.