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New Georgia Film Academy (GFA) Soundstage Opens at Pinewood Atlanta Studios

Atlanta — April 26, 2016

Today, the Georgia Film Academy (GFA) opened a new soundstage at Pinewood Atlanta Studios where people interested in the movie and film industry can get real life, hands-on experience and education.

The opening of the 15,860 soundstage coincides with GFA’s new initiative called “Semester on Set.” The special 10-week course will allow students to take classes at the new soundstage in southern Metro-Atlanta as well as on campuses throughout the University System of Georgia (USG) and the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG).

“Our brand new, state-of-the-art soundstage allows us to more effectively train individuals to fill the 3,000-5,000 film industry jobs that are forecast to open in Georgia from now until 2021,” said Jeffrey Stepakoff, executive director of the GFA. “We’re excited to offer ‘Semester on Set’ so people can either dip their toe into the industry or dive head first into movie and film production.”

“Studios and production companies are currently in need of a variety of on-set film positions, most of which mandate a very specific skillset requiring special training that GFA uniquely provides,” Stepakoff added.

“GFA certification and ‘Semester on Set’ can put people on the fast track to a film industry career that can earn an average $84,000 annual income,” he said.

The soundstage is the newest addition to Georgia’s booming film industry. Georgia-lensed productions generated a record-breaking economic impact of $6 billion during the 2015 fiscal year (July 1, 2014 – June 30, 2015). Georgia also saw record investment from film and television productions with more than $1.7 billion in direct spending in the state. According to the Motion Picture Association of America, the film and television industry is responsible for more than 79,000 jobs and roughly $4 billion in total wages in Georgia. These are high-quality jobs, with an average salary of nearly $84,000, 75 percent higher than the average salary nationwide.

Using locally-sourced materials when available, the new GFA soundstage is designed to accommodate the latest, most up-to-date and constantly changing technology and systems. The facility features a purpose-built, fully attenuated stage designed with a 1.5 megawatt power source to handle any production need, a flexible rigging system to accommodate various lighting and construction parameters, and versatile rigging requirements for every production.

With a GFA certification, students are trained for movie, film and television production jobs including:

Set Production Assistant (PA) Office PA Art: set dressers, props Hair/Make-up/Wardrobe procedures Sound: mixer, boom operator, utility Camera: operator, camera assistants (1st and 2nd) Electric: on-set lamp operators Grip: on-set, dolly grip Locations: managing Craft Services Script Supervision procedures Video Assistants

GFA is now accepting “Semester on Set” enrollment for classes. The program is offered through USG and TSCG at the following institutions: Clayton State University, Kennesaw State University, University of West Georgia, Georgia College and State University, Georgia Piedmont Technical College, Southern Crescent Technical College, Gwinnett Technical College and Savannah Technical College.

Visit for more information or to register.

About the Georgia Film Academy The Georgia Film Academy is a collaborative effort of the University System of Georgia (USG) and the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) and supports workforce needs of Georgia’s burgeoning film and digital entertainment industries. GFA offers a certification program of on-set film production skills, knowledge and experience with film-industry standard organizational structure, professional equipment, and on-set procedures. GFA certifies workforce-ready employees, connects students and prospective employees with employers, and offers a unique capstone experience so top students can secure employment in Georgia. Governor Nathan Deal and the State of Georgia have initiated an unprecedented, cooperative effort among all higher education institutions to deliver an industry-recognized, professional training program, as represented with GFA.

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