AI in Film: Transforming Production, Not Replacing Creativity

In today’s film industry, the integration of AI technologies like the forthcoming Sora will no doubt revolutionize the production process to some degree – bringing significant improvements in efficiency, communication, and technical execution. We recognize the transformative potential of AI, but we also understand that the heart of filmmaking lies in human creativity. While AI will undoubtedly alter how we produce films, it will not replace the unique vision and creativity of filmmakers.

AI generated film set

The initial impact of AI in film production is most evident in set operations and management. AI tools can streamline various logistical aspects, from scheduling and budgeting to resource allocation and crew coordination. This enhanced efficiency allows for smoother operations, reducing downtime and ensuring that everyone is on the same script. Better crew communication and operation management mean that productions can run more smoothly, with fewer interruptions and more focus on the creative process.

As AI technology continues to evolve, its applications will expand beyond organizational tasks. AI systems like Sora can automate technical tasks such as editing, rendering, and even generating complex visual effects. This automation frees up time for editors and visual effects artists to focus on refining the artistic elements of the film, enhancing the overall quality and creativity of the final product. Moreover, AI can assist in creating realistic backgrounds and environments, allowing filmmakers to shoot scenes in virtual locations that would otherwise be logistically challenging or cost-prohibitive.

Despite these advancements, it is crucial to emphasize that AI is a tool that enhances rather than replaces human creativity. The storytelling, character development, and emotional depth that define great films are inherently human traits that cannot be replicated by machines. We are committed to leveraging AI to support our creative teams, ensuring that the essence of storytelling remains untouched while benefiting from technological advancements.

Georgia film production offers a wealth of locations, facilities, and skilled crew resources that make it an ideal place for film production. While AI can create impressive virtual sets, the authentic charm and versatility of Georgia’s landscapes and urban settings cannot be replaced. The area and crew resources provide filmmakers with unparalleled opportunities for creative expression. Our commitment to utilizing local resources ensures that productions in Georgia remain grounded in real-world experiences, even as we embrace cutting-edge technology.

Looking ahead, AI’s impact on the entertainment industry will likely be even more pronounced in the gaming sector. AI can create immersive and dynamic worlds, enhancing player experiences and pushing the boundaries of interactive storytelling. The ability to generate complex environments and realistic characters will transform gaming in ways that parallel the advancements we are seeing in film.

While AI technologies like Sora are transforming the film production landscape, they serve as powerful tools to enhance human creativity, not replace it. We embrace this technology to improve efficiency and quality while preserving the unique vision of our filmmakers. The future of film lies in the harmonious integration of AI and human artistry, creating compelling narratives that resonate with audiences worldwide.

Union strikes, AI, and Georgia

In the face of AI and evolving viewership, the recent Writer’s Guild of America (WGA) strike was a watershed moment…not only for the entertainment industry, but for work across a number of industries.
Let’s dive into the key points.

The WGA strike brought to light critical issues faced by writers in the digital age. With streaming becoming ubiquitous, the priority with the union became attaching compensation to the success of streaming shows, which they largely did. There were also agreements made around screenwriter minimums, residuals and pay increases.

One of the most noteworthy aspects of the recent agreement is the provisions related to AI technology. With AI rapidly changing the landscape of content creation, the WGA secured important protections against AI-generated content taking over the role of human writers.

The settlement states that under the new agreement, writers can still use AI as a tool if their employers allow it. However, they cannot be compelled to use it, and companies must disclose if any AI-generated material is used during the writing process. This ensures that writers retain creative control and recognition in an era where AI plays an increasingly significant role in content production.

The settlement appears to take a defensive position legally. That is, from the position of the studios – ‘AI is not allowed, but we can’t stop the writers from using it.’

This defensive position won’t stop lawsuits from happening. In fact, I think it creates an initial position in regards to this burgeoning technology with lawsuits continuing to draw further lines and rules. One important suit coming up involves a trade group of prominent US writers including John Grisham and George R.R. Martin. They’re suing ChatGPT for violating their copyrights. I would expect more suits like this as well as revisions of the writer’s agreement (this agreement was for 3 years) over time as we navigate the technology.

Overall though, I believe that this settlement (in regard to AI) strikes a fair initial balance by acknowledging AI’s effectiveness while preserving the creative input of human writers. It’s a positive step toward embracing technology without sacrificing the essence of storytelling.

It’s important to note that while the WGA strike has reached an agreement, the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) strike is still ongoing. Moreover, other industries where writing is importing will no doubt be affected by this agreement. I believe that this agreement will play a positive role in settle the initial groundwork for these industries as well as the future of work for many.

Georgia Entertainment News

We’re excited to announce that we’ve become a sponsor with Georgia Entertainment News, a leading advocate and news source for the flourishing entertainment industry in the great state of Georgia. This partnership is a testament to our dedication to promoting and supporting the burgeoning film and media scene in Georgia, and we couldn’t be more excited about the opportunities it presents.

Georgia Entertainment News (GEN) is at the forefront of the creative and entertainment capital of the world, offering unparalleled insights and analysis for various facets of the industry, including film, broadcast, music, digital production, and video gaming/esports. Their mission aligns with our own, as they tirelessly champion the growth and success of Georgia’s entertainment sector. As a partner of this dynamic organization, we are committed to strengthening the local media landscape and contributing to the vibrant ecosystem that continues to develop in our state.

Over the summer, we had the privilege of participating in two exciting events, called ‘Unscripted Road Shows’, hosted by GEN. The first event, covering the areas of North Fulton and Forsyth counties, took place in Roswell at the Signature Production Group facilities. It was standing room only and they had a number of distinguished panelists.

The second event, for Cobb County, took place in Marietta. Here too, over 200 entertainment executives, legislators, government officials, and local business owners came together to network and discuss the changing entertainment landscape. Lee Thomas of the Georgia Entertainment Office, spoke and shared the evolution of the state’s entertainment business since the early 1970s. Included are some pics from the two events.

In addition to Georgia Entertainment News’ annual and regional events, these Road Show events have been very effective in terms of fostering and inspiring future collaborations. As we move forward with this partnership, we remain dedicated to the mission of promoting the state as well as our production services. We hope to play a contributing role in the growth and success of Georgia’s entertainment industry.

Stranger Things in Georgia

Georgia film production crew Stranger Things

Another heavyweight in terms of Georgia productions has been Stranger Things. The science fiction series set in the 1980s has been a massive hit, loved by millions of viewers worldwide. The series stars Winona Ryder, David Harbour, and Mathew Modine, among many others. The 5th and final season is being filmed and it will be aired in 2024. If you haven’t seen it (even a few episodes with the glut of streaming options today), it’s a good one.

Stranger Things is the perfect blend of science fiction, horror, and nostalgia that will take you on a wild ride to the 1980s. With its retro vibes and eerie soundtrack, the show transports you back to a time
of Walkmans, arcade games, and feathered hair. The storyline follows a group of nerdy grade schoolers who get caught up in a supernatural mystery that threatens their small town. From the very first episode, you’ll likely be hooked on the show’s plot, characters, and mysterious government conspiracies.

The series is full of iconic pop culture references, from E.T. to Dungeons and Dragons, that will leave you feeling nostalgic for the simpler times of your childhood, assuming you’re old enough :). But don’t
let the nostalgia fool you – the show has plenty of jump scares and intense action sequences to keep you on the edge of your seat.

The show’s phenomenal success is due to its excellent production quality, which has been a significant part of its appeal. Fortunately, much of the filming for the series has taken place in Georgia, mostly
around metro Atlanta. Many of the neighborhood sets were in East Point, but also Stone Mountain, Stockbridge, etc. Here again is the AtlasofWonders link on where the actual locations were filmed.

I believe the decision to film here has been a big part of its success. While the story is set in Indiana, Georgia’s diverse landscape has provided a wide range of locations for the show’s filming. The state’s forests, small towns, and urban areas have all played important roles. And show’s creators, the Duffer Brothers, have used these locations to create a great sense of 80s nostalgia.

For serious fans of the series, there’s a ‘Stranger Things Experience’ in Atlanta. I recently went and I recommend…particularly if you’re already a fan of the show. It’s an immersive experience where they
use actors, an emergency develops, and you’re given superpowers to save the day. While it’s thematically linked to the series, the events down’t follow any of the storylines in the series.

As a Georgia Film Production, Stranger Things has been a win-win situation for everyone involved. The show has benefited from Georgia’s tax incentives, diverse locations, talented crew, supportive film community, and local businesses. At the same time, Georgia has benefited from the show’s success, which has helped create jobs and boost the local economy. With its unique combination of resources, we’re sure to continue to attract these kinds of iconic productions.

Film production quality today is unreal

With the ever-increasing access to movies and documentaries via streaming, you’ve no doubt been inundated with options. It’s ridiculous to say today that movies of any kind are inaccessible. I’ve even noticed that in the last couple of years, access to old movies (say, 30+ years and older), is now often free on various sites. (Search tip: just type in the name of the older movie along with “watch free online”. And although while “free”, it’s always courteous to donate a little if you can 🙂 )

Anyway, it may have come to your attention that movie production quality has improved. Comparing one of today’s productions versus an old movie isn’t really fair. As you might expect, this is due to advances in technology and techniques. Of course, one of the biggest changes has been the transition from film to digital. This has allowed for a greater level of control in the post-production process, as well as a lower cost for production overall.

In addition to the switch to digital, there have also been major improvements in special effects. CGI has become much more realistic and seamless, allowing filmmakers to create entire worlds and characters
that were previously impossible. This has opened up a whole new level of creativity for directors and has led to some truly groundbreaking films.

Another area where movie production quality has improved is in the use of sound. The rise of surround sound and the ability to more precisely control the sound design has enhanced the overall viewing experience. In addition, the use of music in film has become more sophisticated, with original scores and songs being carefully crafted to support the emotions and themes of the film.

The use of camera equipment has also improved significantly. The development of high-quality, lightweight cameras has allowed for more fluid and dynamic shots, as well as the ability to shoot in a wider
range of environments and lighting conditions. This has given directors more flexibility and has led to some truly breathtaking visuals.

Overall, the quality of movie production has come a long way in recent years, thanks to advances in technology and techniques. From the switch to digital and the improvement of special effects, to the evolution of sound design and the development of camera equipment, there are many factors that have contributed to the increased quality of films. As technology continues to improve, it will be interesting to see how the movie industry evolves and what new innovations will shape the way we experience films and content.

Feature “Going Viral” in the can

The principal photography of the feature finished last month. Most of the funding was completed last December, but it still needs to go through post-production. Scheduling issues forced us to film over two separate time periods…3 weeks in January and 2 weeks in May. So we really experienced some extreme weather, both cold and hot. Each one of those conditions puts different sets of pressures to surmount.

It’s been a great learning experience for all (production, cast and crew) while at the same time, we got to put together a movie that I think will do pretty well…but in terms of critical and audience reception.

As a recap, the movie is set in the 1980’s and follows a high school boy wanting to break out of the rut of his unpopularity. Being a tech nerd, he accidentally finds access to artificial intelligence. He uses this to propel himself to the riches of local stardom. But like today, he comes to realize that technology comes with responsibility, and he gets more than he counts on.

The movie is an homage to the time of early mainstream technology…a time that most people consider was simpler. Fast forward about 30+ years to today and the uncertainty that seems to come along with technology.

As you can expect with all film productions, there were obstacles along the way. But I’d say that overall, the production was great with the cast being its biggest strength. The production team did a great job finding the right talent for each role.

Above are some pics of the production over both shoots. Post production will likely last through September and hopefully the film will be distributed by the end of this year. I’ll update by that time to let
you know when and where you can see it.

Georgia series comes to an end

Whether or not you were a fan and agreed that Ozark had a good finale, there’s no question that Georgia hosted a great TV series! The series was filmed mostly in the state with some in Missouri where the storyline was set.

georgia film location scout

I thought the location scouts really did a great job in finding places that worked well with the production. Finding the locations that fit the narrative, contracting with the owners, prepping and decorating the sets take a lot of time and organization. In this case, it brings a lot of value to the locations both in terms of are area visibility and revenue. Both the local area and the state benefit greatly in a number of ways, not the least of which is that residents will be talking about it for years to come. is a great site for finding locales where filming takes place. Page for Ozark.

georgia film scout

Lake Allatoona and Lake Lanier served for the primary production locations. Many other locations were filmed on the northeast side of Atlanta. This includes Norcross, Peachtree Corners, Braselton, and Stone Mountain to name a few.

The most surprising was where they filmed the cartel boss’s mansion. I would have bet that that was filmed in Mexico or even Texas. But it was filmed in Atlanta – the Westview Abbey, which is very close to the state capitol in downtown Atlanta. To turn that into a Mexican drug lord’s hideout with ease requires the talents of impressive location and set professionals.

In Development: Teen Sci-fi Feature

We’re in the process of making a feature film. It’s called “Going Viral” and is set to be produced (principal photography) this November. The film takes place in the 80’s and is about a 14-year-old boy, Beckett O’Connell, who taps into technology of the future and captures the popularity he’s craved. But tapping into Artificial Intelligence of the future in the 1980’s provides some challenges of its own that Beckett isn’t prepared for.

Georgia film in development

The project is now in the late development stage. For GFP (we have most of the crew in place), specifically that consists of funding and identifying talent.

We’re about 75% of the funding that’s needed to move to pre-production. By the end of this month, we hope to have met our funding goal. There’s also the talent that we’re looking to add. Since it’s set in the 80’s, it’s been fun talking to popular actors from popular 80’s movies in looking to get them attached to the project. I’ll let you imagine some of them 🙂

Here is the development page that includes storyboards and a couple videos around the film-

Here’s the Instagram page too for the project –

Of course, if you’re looking to help fund the project, please do! If you know of others who might be, please share that page above with them.
We’d love for you to be included – it’s going to be a lot of fun!

In development - Georgia film

Location scouting in Georgia

One of the most important things in pre-production is location scouting. Where you decide to shoot is very important to the film and the budget you’re working with. For large films, this often includes a location team. But for smaller budgets, it requires either a dedicated, seasoned person or at least dedicated time from the producer and/or the director., in its charge to provide a welcoming environment for filmmakers over the decade, has set up a site where private owners have
submitted their properties as potential film locations. It’s not bad and has a number of entries. You can find that directory here. Still, there are many available locations that aren’t on that public site or others. Finding a good location often requires a professional who spends time in that area approaching private property owners. Technology and location websites are good, but there’s just a lot more to finding a good location than viewing listings.

georgia film location

It’s always a good idea to develop a list of locations for each unique scene. Of course if there are properties favorable to several scenes (eg an existing film set), then that’s even better. But no matter what location or property you find, it’s good practice to have several options at first and pare them down.

Once you’ve narrowed the selections down, you’re going to want to vet the particular locations. If you’re not an expert location scout (not many of these), then there are tutorials, videos, and checklists online for making sure that the location will work for your production. Some factors include space, power, sound, surroundings, parking, and permits. Sound stage space in Georgia is also plentiful, but requires some time to find the right fit and budget as well.

We at Georgia Film Production would be happy to help you find the best filming locations for your production. We help based upon the storyline and budget. Let us know if you need help!

On location

Filming in Georgia offers a lot of benefits. Of course for larger productions (over $500k) filmed here, there is a 20 percent tax credit. But that aside, the location opportunities for filming in Georgia are boundless. There are the large sound stages (Pinewood/Trilith, EUE/Screen Gems, and Blackhall Studios) in and outside metro Atlanta where more recent blockbusters such as “The Avengers”, “Black Panther”, and “Jumanji: The Next Level” have been filmed.

We’ve had very popular movies in the past that were filmed all around the state. Just a handful include “Forrest Gump” (Savannah), “Fried Green Tomatoes (Juliette), “Deliverence” (Rabun County/Tallulah Gorge), “My Cousin Vinny” (Monticello), and “Remember the Titans” (Rome). And of course some popular TV series have been filmed here as well such as “The Walking Dead” (Senoia), “Ozark” (Lakes Allatoona and Lanier), and “Stranger Things” (Jackson).

We at GFP have had opportunities to film at a number of great Georgia locations as well including Covington, Milledgeville, Macon, Lilburn, Druid Hills, and all around metro Atlanta.

We offer location scouting for those needing just the right setting. Some require permits while others are private opportunities that are managed adminstratively with the location owners. We’ll help you shoot wherever you need.