Crews begin prepping areas around Rome for filming next week

Berry College PR director Chris Kozelle confirmed on March 4, 2020, that preparations for an unnamed filming project were underway at Berry College. A sign reading “Pennhurst Mental Hospital” was put up on the road leading to the Ford Buildings. 

ATLANTA — Georgia’s film industry remains among the world’s leaders despite the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on film and TV productions.

Business Facilities Magazine has named Georgia No. 1 in its new Film Production Leaders category in its annual 2020 Rankings Report, Gov. Brian Kemp announced Thursday.

The magazine’s recognition of the Peach States comes soon after news that Georgia-lensed productions have received nearly 50 Emmy Award nominations.

“Our production numbers show Georgia was on pace for another record year for film before COVID-19,” Kemp said. “They confirm that Georgia continues to lead the way in film production.”

Despite the shutdown of film productions last spring in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, the 234 film and television productions that filmed in Georgia during the last fiscal year spent $2.2 billion in the state. That was down from $2.9 billion in fiscal 2019 and $2.7 billion in fiscal 2018.

Film productions are just now starting to ramp back up, with at least 20 currently in production or filming prep in Georgia.

The Georgia Film Office unveiled a “best practices” guide for filming in May to help discourage the spread of COVID-19, based on input from officials with studio and production companies that maintain a presence in the state.

“We are continuing to welcome productions back to Georgia and get our incredible crews and film teams back to work,” said Lee Thomas, the state Department of Economic Development’s deputy commissioner for film, music and digital entertainment.

The Emmy nominations for Georgia-lensed productions announced this week include “Watchmen,” “Ozark,” “Stranger Things,” “Love is Blind,” “Dolly Parton’s Heartstrings: These Broken Bones,” and actor Jason Bateman for “The Outsider.”

HBO’s limited series “Watchmen” and Netflix’s hit series “Stranger Things” also earned Peabody Awards in June.

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