HBO says they’re still evaluating where to shoot Season 3 of Ballers, a football comedy featuring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, but the Miami Herald reports "all signs point to ‘Ballers’ leaving South Florida."
A week after the network stated it was evaluating where the football comedy would shoot its third season, "including an option to stay in Miami," the show appears to be headed to Los Angeles.
Multiple sources from the South Florida film community, who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of being penalized, stated the network has ordered local crews to load all of the show’s sets and costumes onto cargo containers, which are being transported to California via tractor-trailers.
By Monday afternoon, a warehouse at 3000 NW 123rd St. in Opa-Locka where the "Ballers" production assets are stored in-between seasons had already been nearly emptied.
HBO declined to address the rumors directly. In a statement provided to the Herald, the network only said, ‘"Ballers’ season 3 production doesn’t start until next year so we are still evaluating how best to serve the series. We will announce our plans when they are finalized."
Why? Tax reasons, most likely. California has a more attractive tax-incentive program while Florida has not replenished their own, per the Herald.
Part of California’s new program includes a tax credit aimed specifically at "Relocating TV Series" for ongoing productions that agree to move to the state after having filmed previous seasons elsewhere. The application window for this tax credit is Nov. 14-29 and allocation letters won’t be issued until Dec. 5. This might explain why HBO officials won’t confirm the show’s West Coast move before their incentives are locked in.
The show isn’t among HBO’s better productions despite its superstar headliner but it did provide a somewhat entertaining take on football off the field, even ruffling the NFL’s feathers.
Unfortunately, it appears our map featuring Ballers South Florida filming locations will be the last of its kind.