To date in 2014, Atlanta has seen an estimated $5.1 billion in economic impact from film and television production- and Georgia is paying attention. Georgia already provides the largest tax incentives in the nation. Companies that spend at least half a million on production or post-production receive a 20 percent tax credit, and an additional 10 percent is given to those who put a big peach promotional logo on their finished product. As a result, there is a burgeoning film services culture developing. The city has begun to assemble an impressive infrastructure of studios and related businesses, including more than 30,000 skilled production professionals and more than 1,000 production suppliers and support vendors, according to the Georgia Film, Music & Digital Entertainment Office.
In recent years, services that cater specifically to the talent and production have emerged as well. ‘Celebrities come here for anywhere from a two day drop-in for a feature film, to up to 8 months or longer for a scripted or reality TV series’, says luxury real estate agent David Wilson. ‘They want everything to be as good as it is in LA or New York. When they get here, they find out we do it better.’ And by better, he means ‘Southern’. Southern hospitality is unmatched. The food, services and amenities all come with a polite smile, a genuine concern for your comfort and, an ice cold glass of sweet tea.
There are 2 huge new studio developments breaking ground soon: Tyler Perry’s new 330 acre venture at Ft. McPherson, and the Jacoby Group’s Atlanta Media Campus and Studios. At over 300,000 sqft of studio and post space, the Jacoby project will be the largest production facility outside of Los Angeles. They join Atlanta outposts of London’s Pinewood Studios and North Carolina’s EUE Screen Gems as anchors of the Atlanta film industry.
The high-end residential market is exploding with luxury condos and estate properties in Alpharetta, Buckhead, Midtown and Atlanta’s up and coming (and hip) Old Fourth Ward. There’s an easy sort of luxury that goes with the relaxed pace here in th O4W. Celebrities can be found brunching at Parish, biking the East Side Beltline, stopping over at The Bantam Pub for cocktails, and sneaking into The Cleremont Lounge for some after-hours shenanigans (a favorite spot for now-local Woody Harrelson).
With the seemingly endless schedule of production on the books, Atlanta will see a growing entertainment industry for years to come. It may finally be growing into its nickname ‘Hollywood of the South’
We loved Jerry Grillo’s article earlier in the year in Georgia Trend- great local perspective: Ready For Its Close Up