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10 Tips for Shooting Video in Atlanta

Posted by Rebekah Toth Burns on March 24, 2015

Atlanta, or Hotlanta as the locals call it, got its nickname mainly for the humidity that accompanies the summer temperatures. In July you have about a 50/50 chance there will be precipitation and when it rains it pours. It makes for some really interesting on location film shoots. The Big Peach started out as a railroad town and has blossomed into the ninth largest metro area in the United States. Atlanta is the perfect cross section of southern charm and powerhouse commerce, as the birthplace of Gone with the Wind, Coca‑Cola, and CNN, with sixteen Fortune 500 companies headquartered within its metro area. If you are a Video Producer who needs to capture on-camera interviews in Atlanta we have complied ten tips from our local video crews in Atlanta.

TEN: “Quite a few clients have asked us for that compressed, long-lens, crowd shot in Atlanta.  Well, it can be had here, but you have to know where to look.  I suggest you go to Georgia State’s campus, then walk to the corner of Peachtree Center Ave SE and Decatur Street SE.  If you look east down Decatur Street as it slopes downward, and wait for GA State classes to change, you can get that New York City kind of “sea of people” shot right here in Atlanta,” says Crews Control represented DP Troy Thomas.

NINE: Crews Control DP Randy Miller says “Be aware Atlanta is not always Atlanta. A lot of people say they are in Atlanta but the metro area is very spread out. There are a lot of suburbs that can be called Atlanta, but are some distance from the city. It is good to know if your destination is inside or outside the I-285 beltway, or as locals say ‘perimeter’, and if so how far outside.”

EIGHT: “When shooting in Atlanta the first thing to consider is rush hour traffic! It can affect whether you are on time or late for your call time. Which direction you’re travelling will also decide whether you’re moving at the speed limit or crawling. In the morning if you are coming into the city bad traffic times are from 6:30 AM until 9:30 AM. If you are leaving the city, you will be travelling the speed limit. Afternoon traffic starts at 3 PM and last’s till 7 PM leaving the city. There are plenty of people who know the roads and highways, and can tell you when you need to be on or off them” says Crews Control represented DP Kevin Maggiore

SEVEN: “If you’re looking for a decent partial skyline shot of Atlanta, go to the Jackson Street Bridge near downtown.  I see the shot in a lot of TV shows and movies,” says Thomas.  “The bridge crosses over Freedom Parkway running north between Cain Street NE and Highland Avenue NE.  The skyline shot faces west, so it’s best to shoot in the early morning until early afternoon.”

SIX: Kevin says “With the number of movies being shot in Atlanta, there are plenty of rental houses and places to buy all the gear you could possibly need for a shoot. The Georgia Film & Video Sourcebook is a good resource to use to find anything you could possibly need for a production.”

FIVE: “The Georgia Film Commission is called the Georgia Film, Music & Digital Entertainment Office is another office that is more than willing to help, especially if permits are needed” says Maggiore.

FOUR: The City of Atlanta Office of Entertainment works with the Georgia Film, Music & Digital Entertainment Office and is great for film permits within Atlanta, as well as, facilitating communications between the production and city agencies.

THREE: Maggiore says“As with most cities the time of year and weather can play a huge factor if shooting outdoors. The spring and fall are the best times for color and temperature. The summer is usually HHHHot, Humid, and Hazy!”

TWO: “On most corporate and broadcast jobs the client wants a quick shot or two of the skyline.  We like the vantage point above Freedom Parkway that is used on the Walking Dead Series at Jackson St. near Boulevard.   The vantage point from the overpass just past Turner Field overlooking 75-85 is a winner in the afternoon and evening!!  And there is always Centennial Park, a small crew doing scenics is usually fine there, but if you are doing production work you will need a permit” says Crews Control represented DP, Alan Rosen.

ONE: Many airports vie for the title of “the busiest airport in the world” but ATL can say that they are the busiest. Over 96,000,000 passengers walk these terminals in 2014.

Georgia is very production friendly and is currently the hotbed of TV and film productions in the south. Here is a fun reel of movies and films that have been shot in Atlanta, I’ll bet you say… “That was shot in Atlanta?” Let us know what types of productions you are shooting and producing in Atlanta on our blog, Facebook page, LinkedIn page, and Twitter feed.

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