Georgia film space projected to overtake California for top spot

Georgia film industry success shared by businesses
Published: Sep. 13, 2023 at 6:32 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 13, 2023 at 6:35 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - The Georgia Department of Economic Development announced that film and TV productions spent $4.1 billion in Georgia in the last year.

Georgia hosted 390 productions, represented by 31 feature films, 55 independent films, 241 television and episodic productions, 40 commercials, and 23 music videos between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023.

Georgia has overtaken New York for soundstage space. They’re expected to overtake California by 2027. Space to film in Georgia is expected to grow from 45,000 square feet in 2010 to 7 million by 2025. Film-related capital investment in Georgia from 2012-22 totaled $1.3 billion, and the success of the state’s industry is driving explosive infrastructure growth.

The GDED report states studios plan to spend another $2.9 billion on construction between 2023 and 2027.

“Today’s report proves that our film tax credit has turned Georgia into one of the top places globally to film and that it’s working as intended,” said Kelsey Moore, executive director of the Georgia Screen Entertainment Coalition. “The billions spent here in the last fiscal years are dollars that have flowed into Georgia businesses that sell lumber, lighting, trucks, travel services, catering, and hotel rooms and into the family budgets of thousands of hard-working Georgians employed in this industry.

Regis Harrington is the owner of Covert Camera Vehicles in Fayetteville. He moved to Georgia 4 years ago. He said the tax credit has created thousands of jobs for Georgians who want a creative and fulfilling career.

“When you talk film and movies now, the majority of work is coming to Georgia. I hope that they don’t think it’s lining the pockets of the stars and the people that come here and leave, it has built an infrastructure,” said Harrington.

Georgia lawmakers are currently reviewing the tax credits. State Economist Jeffrey Dorfman suggested the film tax credit should be revoked or scaled back.

Moore feels pulling back now will mean productions will move elsewhere.

“When you look at Louisiana, North Carolina, and Florida these are all places that had robust thriving film industries before they altered their tax incentives and what they really found was the residents of those states were really the ones harmed,” said Moore.