Atlanta's booming film industry: 'Everybody around the world watching growth in Atlanta'

Global companies are choosing Atlanta for film but the focus is keeping them here

ATLANTA — Global companies continue choosing Atlanta as the headquarters for their film production. And now the focus is keeping them here.

Channel 2's Wendy Corona attended a meeting of content creators on Monday as they discussed Atlanta's $7 billion per year industry.

At the meeting, two sides of the film world discussed how the film industry is ripe in metro Atlanta, with an even better outlook with so much solid talent choosing the city.

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“There’s never been a better time in the history of the entertainment industry to be a maker of content,” said Frank Patterson, president of Pinewood Atlanta Studios.

Patterson said he knows content creators are here and also making their way to Atlanta to be part of an industry that is not slowing down.

“Everybody around the world is watching the growth that Atlanta is experiencing now,” Patterson said.

It’s growth that has skyrocketed the metro area into a top three film hub along with New York and Los Angeles.

The growth is something that Alex Orr, production unit manager for FX’s highly acclaimed series “Atlanta,” is grateful for.

"It's great to come home and do the job I want to do," Orr told Channel 2 Action News.

Patterson and Orr both worked in film in Los Angeles, and said they agree leadership in the state is what keeps people coming to Georgia. The trick, however, is finding what will get them to stay.

“It really takes growing up our investment culture to bring early-stage money to these makers so they can live and work here,” Patterson said.

ChooseATL leaders are campaigning to raise awareness and build loyalty to Atlanta to cut on the migration of creatives away from the metro area.

“There’s more than I can keep track of. So many film and TV shows going on at the same time,” Orr said.

Orr said he wants to give people just getting started reasons to stay.

“I grew up in the suburbs of Atlanta in the '80s. Nobody in my family does this and (I) just kind of got started doing it by doing it,” Orr said.

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Credit was given to the state leadership, but for the up-and-comer, tax incentives don’t mean much.

But they see this as the kind of environment where creatives are coming together.

Patterson told Corona that Atlanta must continue being an “ecosystem” that nurtures young talent into something bigger.