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Central Illinois Goes Hollywood

MT. ZION - The very first film studio in Central Illinois is under construction.

MT. ZION - The very first film studio in Central Illinois is under construction.

The studio is bringing Hollywood to Mt. Zion. Eyewitness News Reporter Kelsey Gibbs has the story.

What was once an old grade school is now an upcoming work of art. So far, it doesn't look like much, but Heroic Age Art and Film Studios is creating the area's first production film studio.

"We were looking for a place where we can build a sound stage. Something big enough, so the gymnasium/cafeteria provided us with that."

It's an opportunity to bring movie making to other parts of the state besides Chicago.

"Start to get some of those things you can only see in a bigger city. If you come through one place, you may never see any pottery wheels or people welding or painting furniture."

Creative director Eric Hector says it's a place to create top-notch independent films which can give people a taste of Hollywood.

"Television commercials, independent films and corporate video. Everything from live action to animation."

Not only will it bring in Central Illinois' first film studio, but it will give the community a chance to experience the arts.

"For a small community to have this many options and exposure for kids and other people to come and see this, you know is priceless."

The Heroic Age Art Center houses a number of local art businesses from pottery to photography.

"We have potters and we have painters and we have photographers, so anybody looking to do studio art or create art or to sell art or to teach art can have a little room for that. They can do so an art collective."

The film studio should be completed by this time next year. A small movie theater will be built on site which will host private screenings. The company has been in town for more than 20 years.

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