Hall County’s Ed Spivia recalled as pioneer of film industry

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Statement from the Georgia Film Office about Ed Spivia:

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Ed Spivia, who served as the state’s first film commissioner and is the person we credit for making Georgia’s film industry what it is today. Since he was appointed by Governor Jimmy Carter in 1973, film has become one of the state’s top industries. Last year, 455 projects spent $2.7 billion and created more than 92,000 jobs in Georgia. He guided the start of this industry from nothing and quickly turned Hollywood’s attention to Georgia. No words can adequately express our gratitude for everything Ed did to spur filming in Georgia, and we will keep his memory alive by continuing his work for an industry he loved so much. We extend our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones during this difficult time.”

(Gainesville Times) – Long before Netflix and “The Walking Dead,” Georgia’s film-making force was Edwin D. “Big Ed” Spivia of Hall County.

“He worked hard, he played hard, he loved hard and enjoyed life to the fullest,” his wife Barbara Spivia said Tuesday, July 30.

Spivia, who helped develop the Georgia Film Commission and served as its first commissioner, died Saturday, July 27, at his home off Lake Lanier. He was 78.

“Ed is best known for putting the state of Georgia on the map as a great location for filmmakers and as a favorite destination for millions of tourists from all over the country and the world,” says his obituary. See more.

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