This year literally took off like a getaway driver when television series “Getaway Driver” was filmed on location in Augusta, Georgia in the beginning months of 2021 for the Discovery Channel and Discovery+. This explosive and ambitious new driving challenge show chose Augusta as its location in 2020. Choosing Augusta was a result of Film Augusta hosting location scouts and many months of negotiations with the production and location owners.
Produced by October Films, the production needed an industrial location, preferably abandoned, and willing to allow pursuit driving, collisions, and explosive obstacles as part of the course.
“Getaway Driver” stars Michelle Rodriguez plus 24 drivers and pursuers in a real-life chase challenge. The show premiered July 19 on the Discovery Channel, and airs Mondays at 9:00pm watch it anytime streaming on Discovery+. View the trailer for the project below.
Film Augusta estimates this production generated upwards of $1 Million in economic impact for the area. These numbers are based on hotel room nights, confidential knowledge of location fees, the hiring of local crew, firefighters, caterers, and use of other goods and services.
“As Executive Producer for Discovery’s most explosive and ambitious new driving show, Getaway Driver, I knew we had to seek partners who were prepared to work with us in pushing the boundaries,” said Tom Fulford, Senior Executive Producer, October Films. “All in all, Film Augusta was exactly the kind of partner that we needed, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend filming in August to any other film or tv producers.”
Rolling right out of Getaway Driver, the second quarter of 2021 continued to bustle in film activity in Augusta. “Agent Game,” an independently produced film starring Dermot Mulroney and featuring Mel Gibson, shot in Augusta and the surrounding area during April and May. Much of downtown Augusta got front-row seats to the action film watching Mel Gibson in a chase and gunfight scene in the middle of Broad Street. “Agent Game” hired local crew, stayed in hotel rooms and short-term rentals, and injected just under $1 Million into the area’s economy.
“Applewood,” another independently-produced film, began production in May. This project filmed in Augusta and neighboring counties, hired local crew, purchased local goods and services, and featured many local actors as cast.
And finally, Augusta came very close to being in a major Marvel production. Film Augusta hosted the location manager, director, first AD, director of photography and art director more than once for consideration in an upcoming blockbuster. In the end, an artistic decision lead the production to an out-of-state location but relationships were built and Augusta gained more exposure to key decision makers in the film industry.
For a glimpse of how quickly the economic impact from film this first quarter can add up, please view the below infographic.
Film Augusta continues to field many inquiries and tours from at least one six-figure+ production per month. Since the beginning of 2021, inquires and scouting familiarization trips for these larger budget productions are on the rise, with great potential to keep the film industry in Augusta swiftly moving forward! We have recently hosted Showtime, Netflix, Marvel, and HBO, among others. Production spending to impact the local economy in 2020 was $116,000, compared to $1.6 million in 2021. Based on feedback from location managers who have requested to visit Augusta and for locations to be submitted for consideration, the rest of the year continues to look promising.
Courtesy Augusta Film Office