*(Via AJC.com) The Atlanta City Council is expected to approve Monday a leasing agreement with EUE/Screen Gems, Ltd., a film and television production company which plans to transform a portion of Lakewood Fairgrounds into the area’s first state-of-the-art studio complex.
The deal, with backing from Mayor Kasim Reed, would be a boon to the city and state’s film industry as the new facility would likely attract attention from major production studios in Los Angeles and New York, local film production sources say. In turn, city officials hope the center will boost local economy with an estimated 1,000 new jobs that will stimulate the area’s food, hotel and rental services.
The proposed 50-year leasing agreement would cost EUE/Screen Gems $250,000 per year before jumping to $600,000 after a decade, according to city officials. EUE/Screen Gems plans to utilize about 30 acres of the fairgrounds, refurbish Lakewood’s historic Spanish Mission Revival exhibition halls and convert them into sound studios, as well as build a sound stage upwards of 40,000 square feet that could accommodate television, commercial, digital and film productions, according to the proposal.
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