DeKalb’s Booming Film and Entertainment Industry Continues to Thrive Throughout Pandemic, $1.38B in 5-Year Economic Output Projections

Recent ARC Report Shows Strong Business Growth Tends, Economic Impact Data

[Decatur, GA] A recent report generated by the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) forecasts a growing and thriving film and television industry in DeKalb County. The economic analysis and industry-specific report leverages data obtained from 2018 and projects the booming industry’s trajectory as it relates to job opportunities, economic impact, and other key metrics. The five-year snapshot highlights $1.377 billion in economic output from television productions exclusively.

“Georgia’s robust and thriving film and television industry has created a multi-faceted return on investments statewide as productions brings needed job opportunities, technical training, earning potential, and direct economic impact that strengthens the financial fabric of our community,” said Decide DeKalb President Dorian Debarr. “The work of our DeKalb Entertainment Commission (DEC) has been an essential factor in promoting DeKalb’s film-ready sites and diverse landscapes, improving permitting and licensing processes and aligning industry growth opportunities through a deliberate and strategic approach.”

DEC collaborated with the ARC to generate the three-prong report including a Film & Television Industry Economic Impact Projection, a Film & Television Industry Employment Effects Projection and a Market Segmentation Analysis. These sections outline DeKalb’s return on investment, industry growth projections, and employment impacts, growth and demands.

“The film and television industry were not immune to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic but have remained resilient in quickly adapting to new norms to shift production protocols,” said Shelbia Jackson, Director of DeKalb Entertainment Commission. “The swift adaptability speaks to the ingenuity of our industry leaders who think creatively to find solutions to keep
the forward momentum for local projects and those working in both production and post-production efforts.”

Key Points: Economic Impact Report

  • Annual Growth Rate: The report projects a 6.9% annual growth rate for DeKalb County’s film and television industry between 2020 and 2023.
  • Economic Output: $1.076 billion estimated increase in DeKalb County’s total economic output in 2021.
  • Industry Job Impact: According to the forecast, for every year between 2018 and 2023, about 85% of the new film and television industry jobs that come to DeKalb County will truly stay within DeKalb County.
  • Growing Earning Potential: In the telecommunications industry, average earnings are projected to increase by 27% across the 5-year period, from $118,553 to $150,906 in annual earnings. This is followed by the broadcasting and publishing industries, which are projected to show increases of 22% and 21.6%, respectively, in annual earnings across the 5-year period.
  • New Jobs Added to Local Economy: By the end of 2021, DeKalb County will have created almost 4,000 new jobs by welcoming the activities of the film and television industry.

“This ARC report truly provides a blueprint for the road ahead as we not only look towards the growth metrics but also evaluate ways to prepare our local workforce for increased market opportunities, that we work collaborative to prepare for the ‘ripple’ effects’ as business expands and additional industry needs grow and devise forward-looking strategies to increase benefits for our area businesses,” Debarr said.

To view the entire ARC report, click here. For more information on DEC, visit