Vanguard is truly the first advocacy organization that is and will continue addressing the needs and concerns of Georgia’s entertainment industry. A relatively newcomer, vanguard is not meant to replace the State and Atlanta offices of entertainment that services the industry, but will at the least enhance the efforts of those in the industry who want a centrally focused outlet locally and globally.
I say this only because what they have accomplished in the last two months of existence, and it’s been a phenomenal achievement. January was their official launch, hosting an invite-only event that brought industry leaders, movers-and-shakers, and media personnel together for networking, live music and other fun things such as live painting. In case you think “been-there, done-that”, then you are missing the point of just what this means to the GA entertainment industry to have a organization such as Vanguard.
Of course, with any new organization there is a honeymoon period, where people involved along with curious newcomers intersect. With Vanguard, they have hit the ground running. This week, they are going to meet with Georgia state officials at the Capitol to talk about the political and economical structure of the industry and how Vanguard can be involved. Earlier last week, the organization met with officials in Fayetteville regarding the recent movie studio existence.
Political involvement leads to economic clout. There are changes in numbers, meaning the more bodies in an organization, the louder and more effective the organization becomes. Vanguard has a mission statement that works for getting jobs into Georgia and keeping it here, pushing for tax incentives for related businesses to do business in the state – thereby enriching the economic pot - and also develop and execute classes, seminars and training to those involved or wanting to get involved in the entertainment and media industry as a whole.
A perfect example has been in the news recently. The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon was recently given a $100 million dollar tax break by New York because they qualify as a long-running television program. Georgia offers only a 30%tax incentive but since there are no television shows in a late night or long running capacity it’s not quite clear as to the parameters. Vanguard, however, views it differently. Their position is that the incentives should be across the board by employing Georgians in all areas including post-production, infrastructure and even pre-production. The state is already host ot a number of movie productions including the Hunger Games Trilogy, Vampire Diaries, The Walking Dead, Fast and Furious to name a few. This is a proven fact that Georgia can do this if the concerted efforts of our representatives from the Senate and House take a long, hard look at the benefits.
This hard look should be based on the fact that employment would be a big benefit to those practicing their craft such as actors, writers, etc., but also craft-related such as caterers, real estates (for location scouting), teachers (tutoring). These are hard-line items. Then there are bragging rights, affording Georgia to lay claim that we are a force to be reckoned with as a movie/digital/gaming/theater/advertising/radio and television industry that can give a better alternative to NY and LA.
What’s unique about Vanguard is their vision starts at the top. By incorporating top executives in the industry, the theory is one of trickle-down economics. Incorporated is the collaborative alliance between Vanguard and State and City officials. They want to promote people who call Georgia their home, which will in turn help grow Georgia. Secondary involvement is not only network, but industry and media professionals have a hub where they can get valuable info for career enhancement. The future of their infrastructure promotes academia, which pinpoints classes, workshops and seminars.
In the coming months, vanguard will be hosting monthly seminars on various topics. The subjects will vary but be mindful that they will inform and entertain. If you feel this is something you need to be a part of, go to their website for more information.:
Vanguard entertainment + opportunity is not directly associated with any organizations other than Film Atlanta and the Matchbook Media and Public Relations Co.