This article appeared in the September 2016 issue of the Georgia's Cities newspaper.
In August, Gov. Nathan Deal announced that Georgia-produced feature film and television productions generated an economic impact of more than $7 billion during fiscal year 2016. The 245 feature film and television productions shot in Georgia represent $2.02 billion in direct spending in the state.
“Georgia’s film industry provides a significant impact on our state’s economy, employing thousands of Georgians while developing infrastructure and boosting small businesses,” said Deal. “The film industry has created a home in Georgia, and I am committed to retaining this relationship by constructing a strong, film-ready workforce that will continue to help the industry thrive.”
As a result of the High Demand Career Initiative in 2014, developing the film and television industry workforce was identified as a high demand career opportunity for the state. In 2015, Deal created the Georgia Film Academy, a collaborative effort between the University System of Georgia and the Technical College System of Georgia to fast track students into the film and television workforce. Since its opening, the program has been adopted at eight Georgia campuses. By the end of the year, 610 students are projected to have completed the first 16-week introductory course in on-set production, and 274 students will complete on-set production internships and receive certification.
“Georgia’s film industry is on a steady rise year over year and now ranks number three in TV and movie productions, just behind California and New York,” said Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) Commissioner Chris Carr. “As long as we continue to deepen our crew base and add even more studios and businesses to support the industry, Georgia is ensuring its place in the film industry well into the future.”
In addition to the increase in production expenditures, Georgia has experienced enormous film and television related infrastructure and business growth, including the opening of Atlanta Metro Studios in Union City and a significant expansion at Pinewood Atlanta Studios in Fayetteville. More than 130 new businesses have relocated or expanded in Georgia to support this burgeoning industry, creating jobs for Georgians as well as economic opportunities for communities and small businesses.
Georgia-filmed movies will take over the big screen in 2016 with “Solace,” starring Colin Farrell and Anthony Hopkins on September 2; “Sully,” starring Tom Hanks, Anna Gunn and Laura Linney on September 9; “The Birth of a Nation,” starring Nate Parker and Armie Hammer on October 7; and “The Accountant,” starring Ben Affleck, Anna Kendrick and Jon Bernthal on October 14. Upcoming Georgia-filmed television productions premiering within the next few months include “Atlanta,” on FX; “The Walking Dead,” on AMC; and “Halt and Catch Fire,” on AMC.