Rock Valley students learn Illinois’ film industry is booming

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) – Illinois’ film industry is booming. That is what local students learned in Rockford.

Peter Hawley is the Director of the Illinois Film Office. His department’s job is to promote film and TV production throughout the state. Part of that includes a tax credit incentive for producers.

He told students in Rock Valley College’s Mass Communications department that they are also part of the incentive.

“The film industry tells me all the time, this is Hollywood studios telling me this, we need entry-level, film production film crew here,” Hawley said. “We need people who can start as production assistants, location assistants, set dressers, and in a couple of years, go up to department heads and grow the infrastructure that way.”

In 2019, before COVID-19, film production in Illinois was a $560 million business. Hawley says it is already more than that so far this year.

His goal is to eventually hit a billion dollars a year.

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