Georgia Film Industry in Trouble? Reps Upset about Lack of Talent

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There is no doubt in denying how quickly the Georgia Film Industry grew over the last couple of years.

With the release of several Hunger Games movies, the Divergent Series, and several major television shows, Georgia has quickly shown the world that they are a force to be reckoned with in the TV and Film industry.

Production companies that spend at least $500,000 in qualified expenses are eligible for the 20 percent tax credit and can receive an additional 10 percent if the project includes a Georgia logo. According to reports Georgia is on the way to giving $163 million in tax incentives.

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But, Georgia may have hit the biggest wall as they continue to take over the film industry, lack of qualified crews.

According to WSBTV, during a meeting between representatives for the film and television industry told state officials that they regularly struggle to find crews in Georgia and have to hire staff from other states.

Projects have struggled to find construction crews, grip and electric teams and special effects, especially for television teams facing a deadline of only a few weeks, said Craig McNeil, production executive at NBC’s cable arm Universal Cable Productions. McNeil is midway through shooting the first season of “Satisfaction” in Georgia and said the number of projects shooting simultaneously in the state can make it difficult to fully staff.

The problem representatives said, is finding people with both the training and on-the-job experience to help projects get done time and on budget.

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David Grant, vice president of physical production for Marvel Studios, is producing the studio’s first project in Georgia, “Ant Man,” and called the state’s incentive program one of, if not the best, in the U.S. But Marvel has struggled to find the experienced and trained special effects technicians, specialty costumers and stunt team members especially important to an action hero production, Grant said.

When they can’t hire locally, crew members have to be flown in from California, he said.

“We’ve found because Georgia is so busy, some of the advantages of being here via the incentive are wiped away because of the amount of people we have to bring in,” he said.

But, expect things to change quickly. Lee Thomas, director of the Georgia Film, Music & Digital Entertainment Office, said that he will bring the workforce issues to the attention of public universities and technical colleges.

What do you think? Is Georgia ill-equipped to handle multiple productions? Or, do you think this is a problem lies elsewhere? Share with us your thoughts in the comments below:

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