Posted: 4:46 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2013

New film studio to open in Fayette County

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Pinewood studios to go up in fayette county photo
A huge new movie studio is just weeks away from opening in Fayette County. Construction on Pinewood Studios began earlier this year.

By Diana Davis

FAYETTE COUNTY, Ga. —

A huge new movie studio is just weeks away from opening in Fayette County. Construction on Pinewood Studios began earlier this year.

In addition to film production, Channel 2's Diana Davis reports that businesses that support film production are also going up, including Atlanta's Home Depot.

Just a stone's throw from picturesque barns and rural fields sits the brand-new, state-of-the-art movie studio.

Nearly 300 acres with five sound stages will be ready to go in a few weeks. England's Pinewood Studios is known worldwide for "Harry Potter" and James Bond films.

Its Fayette County site will rent sound stage space to different production companies. Matt Forshee of the Fayette County Development Authority says, "Someone like a Paramount or Universal will come in and rent the space. They'll actually crew up at that time, hiring crews for production."

Besides studio space, the new facility will have a Home Depot Distribution Center, particularly used for lumber to build movie sets.

The Home Depot site is going adjacent to some of the big stages, and will not be open to the public.

"It's a true studio project. We'll have the sound stages, but we'll also have vendors there. Home Depot will be one of those, selling things like lumber and nails as they build sets," says Forshee.

Forshee says the county hope The Home Depot will be just the start of luring in as many as 600 vendors, from lighting and camera companies to special effects, all in support of movie making.

According to Forshee, "Those other businesses that co-locate here will have permanent employees on the ground here. It may be one or two people, or it may be 20 or 30 people."

The film industry has grown so quickly in Georgia that more crews trained in film production are needed. Pinewood plans to transform an elementary school into a training facility.

"We need more and more people going into this industry, but we need to train them so that when they go on the job site, they know what they are doing," says Forshee.

Production at the Fayette location should start next month.

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