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Film and entertainment industry may grow in DeKalb

Coming soon to a theater near you: More movies made in DeKalb County.

That’s the hope for the newly created DeKalb County Film, Music & Digital Entertainment Commission, which will seek to expand the local entertainment industry.

The DeKalb Board of Commissioners voted 7-0 on Tuesday to spend $205,000 this year for the film commission, which will have one full-time and five part-time positions.

It will emulate the success of similar efforts in Atlanta and Savannah, said Andrew Greenberg, the chairman of the commission’s advisory board.

“DeKalb has a lot to make it attractive to entertainment businesses. Unfortunately, most people here and elsewhere are unaware,” said Greenberg, who is also executive director for the Georgia Game Developers Association. “Atlanta and Savannah have done amazing jobs spreading the word about what they have to offer. Now it is DeKalb's turn to do the same.”

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Already, there are three movie studios in DeKalb — Blackhall StudiosThird Rail Studios and Eagle Rock Studios — that need highly skilled workers for off-screen jobs to continue attracting films to the area, Greenberg said.

Upcoming movies being made in DeKalb include “Godzilla: King of the Monsters” and “Rampage,” starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

“What we are hoping is that as this industry not only emerges but persists in this region, that we’ll see more and more locally based folks compete for these positions,” said DeKalb Commissioner Jeff Rader before Tuesday’s vote.

The commission’s goals are to improve employment in the entertainment industry, grow entertainment-related businesses and market the county to workers, residents and visitors.

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