Newtown County Film Industry
Tripp Umbach was retained by the Newton County Industrial Development Authority to quantify the current and future economic impacts associated with film industry on the region and the state of Georgia.
Today, the film industry in Newton County is not only supported by the downtown of one of Georgia’s 165 “Camera Ready Communities” and film-inspired tourism, but also by a major capital investment by the production company Cinelease Studios–Three Ring. The studio is developing a filming and production campus to bring even more of the industry in-house to Covington and Newton County. When a television show or production company films, they bring to town actors, producers, writers, location scouts, production teams and fans, all contributing to generating and expanding economic impacts.
Tripp Umbach analyzed the data and used industry-standard assumptions to estimate the economic impact of film tourism in Newton County. These impacts are economic, employment, and tax revenue that can be directly tied back to tourism that is influenced or directly related to the film industry. The impacts are realized in hotels, restaurants, and attractions as a percentage of overall tourism, as film tourism is a subset of general tourism.
Tripp Umbach estimates the economic impact of film tourism to be almost $8 million annually, sustaining 131 jobs, and generating $399,000 in government revenue for the county.
The film industry in the state of Georgia, specifically Newton County, has been a game-changer to the economy, contributing to the revitalization of the historic square in downtown Covington, inspiring residents to start film-inspired businesses, and driving large amounts of film-related tourism for fans to see their favorite fictional town. The “Hollywood of the South” provides more than just southern charm. It is slowly but surely becoming a place where directors, production companies, and location scouts want to come because it is beautiful and affordable and the people are incredibly hospitable.
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