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May 25, 2022

Report: Maine's film industry added $64M to state economy

film crew on sidewalk Courtesy / Garrick Hoffman Photography The Maine film and video production industry generated economic impact exceeding $64 million in 2019. Here, a crew shoots "Kings and Queens," a short film by Maine filmmaker Elmer J. Howard.

A new report says the Maine film and video production industry has provided a $64 million boost to the state's economy in a single year.

The Maine Film Association this week released the report, which is based on findings from a 2019 statewide survey, conducted by the group and University of Maine School of Economics Professor Todd Gabe. 

The survey collected industry revenue and expense data from 128 Maine-based film and production entities: 38 companies and 90 freelance production professionals and independent filmmakers.

“Maine has a vibrant film and media industry that is ripe for growth,” the association’s advocacy chair, Louise Rosen, said in a news release. “As Maine struggles with various challenges in natural resource- and tourist-reliant industries, the green, non-extractive film production industry is in fact a huge opportunity for workforce and economic growth.”

Job growth

The study found the industry had a direct economic impact of $29.25 million in revenue, supported 312 full- and part-time jobs, and generated $16.1 million in direct labor income. The industry’s impact on other sectors in the state — including hospitality, retail, trades, legal and accounting services — resulted in $64.3 million in revenue and 609 full- and part-time jobs, and generated $28.7 million in labor income.

Shifts in media production toward remote work, including editorial and digital operations and virtual production, now position Maine as a desirable base for film companies and freelancers, according to the release.

Film and video production employs skilled workers who are trained in the creative arts and who possess technical skills that make them competitive in today’s labor force, according to the release.

The sector comprises over 40 production companies and more than 200 freelance and independent filmmakers operating in Maine. The companies and professionals work in all stages and aspects of media production, creating and distributing feature length and short, narrative and documentary, commercial and educational film and video, multimedia installations, and animation.

“Worldwide, the film- and media-making sector is growing exponentially,” said Rosen. “Maine has the opportunity to create an environment that fosters growth within this innovative workforce, an environment that will entice young, creative, and tech-savvy professionals to come to Maine and offer exciting reasons for Maine’s own talent to stay.”

The Maine Film Association is a membership organization of film and media professionals, students and production companies.

To see the full report, click here.

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