Schauer Group Century of Service Nonprofit Award program

Thank you to everyone who voted for the GCFC during the contest, we appreciate your support!
The Family Resource Center of Wickliffe was announced the winner of the Schauer Group Century of Service Nonprofit Award program for 2022.

From ‘The Avengers’ to ‘Shooting Stars,’ Bill Garvey brings Hollywood to Cleveland

GCFC President Bill Garvey










SOURCE: | Joey Morona
April 10, 2022

CLEVELAND, OHIO — Northeast Ohio is ready for its closeup once again as filming on “Shooting Stars” begins in parts of Cleveland and Akron this month. Based on LeBron James’ autobiography of the same name, the Universal release focuses on the NBA superstar’s childhood years, telling the story of a close-knit group of friends who overcome the challenges of growing up in the inner city and find refuge together on and off the court.

The project is the first major Hollywood production to come to the area since the Netflix film “White Noise” (also known as “Wheat Germ”) starring Adam Driver wrapped in November. It’s also the latest win for the Greater Cleveland Film Commission, the nonprofit that works to attract film and television productions to the region. The production will be here into June and pour a projected $25.5 million into the local economy, hiring crew members, partnering with local vendors and businesses and booking hotel rooms.

To put that into perspective, “Judas and the Black Messiah,” shot here in 2019, had a slightly smaller budget of $21 million and hired 118 local crew and over 3,000 extras, worked with 60 local businesses and booked more than 1,000 hotel room nights during its stay.

“LeBron James is very loyal to Northeast Ohio,” said Bill Garvey, president of the Greater Cleveland Film Commission. “I think he always saw this as a project that needed to film here. But ultimately these projects depend on a tax incentive to come.”

Garvey is referring to the Ohio Motion Picture Tax Credit, which provides productions a 30 percent tax credit on their in-state costs. The state limits the maximum amount of incentive awarded at $40 million a year. “Shooting Stars” is taking up $7.6 million of that.

“We have a steady stream of content being produced here, but we also have more projects that are turned away because of the restrictions of our tax incentive,” he said.

Garvey said the state had to turn away $224.5 million worth of film and television projects over the past year because of the cap on the tax incentives available. In his view, those are opportunities the state can’t afford to lose.

“We want to take advantage of the arms race of the streaming wars that’s led to an exponential increase in the amount of production happening throughout the world,” he said. “There is more opportunity than there ever has been in an industry that is growing more than any other industry at the moment.”

Originally from Queens, New York, Garvey has been in the film industry for 26 years. Before his current role luring projects to the region, he worked on the other side of the equation as a location manager, finding places for filmmakers to shoot their movies and then working on the logistics to make it happen.

His interest in movie-making began while he was a business major at the University of Notre Dame. Needing an elective, the self-described movie buff took a film production class. Fate then stepped in when “Rudy,” the inspiring 1993 sports drama, came to campus to film scenes. Director David Anspaugh spoke to the class. Garvey was hooked.

“Here’s this director in front of me telling us how he makes his living, doing something he loves. It was a foreign concept to me,” he said. “It opened my eyes.”

After bouncing around the country, Garvey and his wife settled in Cleveland in 2008 to be close to her mother, who was suffering from cancer. He quickly realized he didn’t have to be in Hollywood or New York to continue what he loved doing. Not long after his arrival, a producer hired him to scout locations for a super-secret project. It was a big-budget movie set in New York City with elaborate action sequences that would be impossible to film in a city of eight million people.

avangers filming begins

Cars, taxis and trucks were smoking and tossed about like toys during the first day of filming on “The Avengers” movie set on Monday, August 15, 2011. (Lynn Ischay/The Plain Dealer)The Plain Dealer

The film turned out to be “The Avengers.” Marvel originally intended to shoot it in Detroit, but those plans fell through. Luckily, Garvey knew of a place where you could easily shut down streets so Captain America and Thor could fight off an alien invasion, and also stand in for Stuttgart, Germany, where Loki could cause trouble. It was his new adopted hometown of Cleveland, Ohio.

“That film was kind of the calling card that put Cleveland on the map and started a pipeline of other projects coming here,” he said.

Garvey followed that up by bringing “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” “The Fate of the Furious,” “Judas and the Black Messiah” and “White Noise” to Cleveland. Those efforts plus his existing relationships with companies like Marvel, Disney, Netflix, Paramount, Universal and Warner Bros. led to him being named head of the GCFC last September.

Instead of the buyer, he’s the seller now. His pitch is pretty simple. With its unique and varied architecture, topography and climate, Cleveland can be anywhere the film needs it to be.

“Whenever I’m with a director or producer from out of town and I take them on a tour, I show them all this amazing architecture and I say that’s never been in a movie. They’re shocked because everywhere they’ve ever been, everything’s been on screen,” he said.

He also sells them on the cost of living here. But the city’s biggest asset, according to Garvey, is its people.

“I’ve filmed in many places and you don’t get the welcoming reception that we get here,” he said. “It’s wonderful to be able to go into a community, spend money and people appreciate it.”

Still, studios aren’t going to spend millions of dollars just because we’re nice to them. There are 4,000 projects currently in development and to attract some of them, Garvey said Ohio needs to stay competitive with places that offer higher tax incentives than the $40 million Ohio issues annually. States like Pennsylvania ($70 million), Kentucky ($75 million), New Mexico ($100 million) and Louisiana ($150 million).

“When the tax incentive goes away, so does the spending,” he said.

Garvey is working with state legislators and other stakeholders, trying to increase Ohio Motion Picture Tax Credit and make it more flexible. Since its inception in 2009, the incentive has generated $1.1 billion in economic impact and created over 6,000 jobs. The ultimate goal, he said, is to replicate the success in Georgia, which doesn’t cap the amount of tax credits it doles out or restrict when entertainment companies can apply for them to just two times a year as Ohio does. The result: film and TV production has become a major part of Georgia’s economy with $4 billion of spending annually, which has led to the creation of an infrastructure that now includes roughly 100 soundstages across the state.

“That’s why they’re the new Hollywood,” he said.

Garvey believes the film industry in Northeast Ohio has the potential to become a sustainable, year-round business, too. Some of the pieces of the puzzle are already in place. Studio projects such as “White Noise,” “Cherry,” “The Marksman,” Oscar winner “Judas and the Black Messiah,” and smaller ones such as “The Hunting” and “The Enormity of Life” have given local actors, artisans and technicians valuable experience on set. Film programs at Cleveland State University, Kent State University, Cuyahoga Community College and Cleveland Institute of Art are producing the next generation of filmmakers.

“We have a pipeline of those kids going into these jobs, but we want more of these jobs for more of these kids,” he said.

That pipeline includes a few productions scheduled to arrive after “Shooting Stars” wraps. Garvey can’t elaborate on them, but he’s particularly excited about a Warner Bros. feature that will be partially shot here and another project he describes as “high profile.” Stay tuned.

For now, his focus remains on expanding the film industry here and across Ohio. He’s been encouraged by the progress so far.

“There have been so many silos over the years and my main goal is breaking down the silos and getting everybody cooperating as a film community,” he said. “Once we have a higher tax incentive, then we can have multiple projects shooting in multiple places at the same time. That’s what creates stability and longevity.”


Celebrate Black History Month with the GCFC and get your raffle tickets for a chance to win this prize pack!

All proceeds from this raffle will fund scholarships for the GCFC Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) workshop program that sponsors people from underrepresented groups to attend our workforce events and online training.

Raffle tickets are:
1 for $10
5 for $45
12 for $94


The winner will be announced on Friday, April 1st, 2022.

For questions, please contact Development Coordinator Juli Johnson Piller at [email protected].


Photo and Letter: Venus & Serena Williams with Cast

Oscar® Winner
Best Actor – Will Smith

Directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green, starring Will SmithAunjanue EllisJon Bernthal

A look at how tennis superstars Venus and Serena Williams became who they are after the coaching from their father Richard Williams.

Now in theaters and streaming on HBO Max


Flask & Shot Glasses, Bandana, Trading Cards, Hardcover Script

Nominated for 1 BAFTA Award
Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer – Jeymes Samuel


Directed by Jeymes Samuel, starring Jonathan MajorsZazie BeetzRJ Cyler

When an outlaw discovers his enemy is being released from prison, he reunites his gang to seek revenge.

Watch on Netflix


Making of…Hardcover Book, Hardcover Script

PASSING (2021)
Nominated for 4 BAFTA Awards
Outstanding British Film of the Year
Best Leading Actress
Best Supporting Actress
Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer – Rebecca Hall

Directed by Rebecca Hall,  starring Tessa ThompsonRuth NeggaAndré Holland

“Passing” follows the unexpected reunion of two high school friends, whose renewed acquaintance ignites a mutual obsession that threatens both of their carefully constructed realities.

Watch on Netflix



RESPECT (2021)
Nominated for 1 Screen Actors Guild Award
Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role – Jennifer Hudson

Directed by Liesl Tommy, starring Jennifer HudsonForest WhitakerMarlon Wayans

Following the rise of Aretha Franklin’s career from a child singing in her father’s church’s choir to her international superstardom, RESPECT is the remarkable true story of the music icon’s journey to find her voice.

Rent on Amazon Prime


Softcover Script, Original Movie Soundtrack

HARRIET (2019)
Nominated for 2 Oscars®
Best Actress – Cynthia Erivo
Best Original Song – “Stand Up”

Directed by Kasi Lemmons, starring Cynthia ErivoJanelle MonáeLeslie Odom Jr.

The extraordinary tale of Harriet Tubman’s escape from slavery and transformation into one of America’s greatest heroes, whose courage, ingenuity, and tenacity freed hundreds of slaves and changed the course of history.

Rent on Amazon PrimeWatch on Peacock



Making of… Hardcover Book

Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy®
Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics – “Letter to My Godfather”

Directed by Reginald Hudlin, starring Clarence AvantHank AaronGwen Adolph

This documentary follows the life of Clarence Avant, the ultimate, uncensored mentor and behind-the-scenes rainmaker in music, film, TV and politics.

Watch on Netflix


Cleveland Named to Moviemaker’s 2022 Best Places to Live and Work as a Moviemaker

Cleveland is rising up the ranks to 12th in MovieMaker Magazine’s best places for filmmakers to work and live.

Cleveland is a chameleon, capable of transforming into whichever city the script needs it to be.  Cleveland easily wears so many hats because there is an abundance and diversity of architecture, ranging from the 19th century to ultra-modern.  The topography ranges from flat as Kansas to cliffs and mountains, all within a short company move within a 30-mile radius. Local and state governments gladly work with production companies to cut through red tape.  And another beautiful trait: Clevelanders aren’t jaded.

It is refreshing how easy it is to film movies in Cleveland.  But the cost of living alone is enough to make Cleveland the best place for a filmmaker to live.  That’s why Cleveland is a filmmaker’s Shangri-La.

Click here to read the full article.

Support Film In Cleveland with AmazonSmile

You can use AmazonSmile every day of the year and support Cleveland Film when you shop!

Sign up for AmazonSmile and select Greater Cleveland Film Commission as your preferred charity at or in the Amazon Shopping App on iOS and Android.


  1. Join AmazonSmile – If you are not already an AmazonSmile member, sign up on your web browser. Simply select the Greater Cleveland Film Commission to start generating donations, at no cost to you.
  2. Get the App – Download or update to the latest version of the Amazon Shopping app on your phone. You can find it in the App Store for iOS or Google Play for Android.
  3. Turn on AmazonSmile – Open the app and find ‘Settings’ in the main menu (☰). Tap on ‘AmazonSmile’ and follow the on-screen instructions to turn on AmazonSmile on your phone.


MakeMeSmile is a Chrome extension that automatically helps ensure that your Amazon purchase can be correctly attributed to Amazon Smile, a charitable program.

Make your online purchases count with no extra effort on your part by downloading this free extension.


Limited Edition ‘Guardian of Film’ Merchandise Available Again for the Holidays!

 ‘Guardian of Film’ Fundraiser is now back and open for a LIMITED time!
The campaign will run from November 18th – December 1st, 2021 for a delivery date of December 17th, 2021.


The Greater Cleveland Film Commission (GCFC) is the only 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to driving economic development and job creation by cultivating a robust film and television industry in Northeast Ohio.

Since 2009, media projects in Ohio have generated over $1.1 billion in economic impact and created 6,192 full-time equivalent jobs. More than 70% of Ohio’s film tax incentive spending occurs in Greater Cleveland, thanks to our work.

GCFC’s work to bring jobs and economic impact to our community is more important than ever.

CLICK HERE to Purchase a ‘Guardian of Film’ T-Shirt

CLICK HERE to Purchase a ‘Guardian of Film’ Hoodie

CLICK HERE to Purchase a ‘Guardian of Film’ Hat

By purchasing a Guardian of Film Limited Edition t-shirt, hoodie, or hat, a portion of the proceeds benefited our Sustainability Fund to support Film Commission operations during the Coronavirus pandemic. Your support helped GCFC’s vital programs and services to continue through the pandemic and thrive into the future.

*GCFC ‘Guardian of Film’ Fundraiser orders are fulfilled by CustomInk, LLC., and CustomInk, LLC will deliver ordered items by December 17th. Due to increased demand, shipping delays may occur, and the delivery date is not guaranteed. For questions, please contact CustomInk, LLC Help Center.

Get your start in Film & TV Production!

Did You Know: 95% of the people who work in the film industry never walk down the red carpet.

A film crew is made up of hundreds, sometimes thousands, more jobs than just the director, actors, or camera operators. Whether you’re fresh out of high school, trained at a vocational school, graduated college, or are simply looking for a career change, almost any job skill you have will translate to a career in the film and TV industry!

Check out this list below, which is just a handful, of possible career paths you can take to get your start in Film and Television Production.

The Greater Cleveland Film Commission (GCFC) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit whose mission is to create jobs and economic impact for Northeast Ohio through a vibrant film and media arts industry. We pursue our mission by advocating for the Ohio Motion Picture Tax Credit (OMPTC), attracting productions to our region, and training the local workforce.

Since 2009, the GCFC has attracted over 300 productions, most recently Oscar®-winner Judas and the Black MessiahCherry, and Liam Neeson’s The Marksman. These projects have created 6,192 full-time equivalent jobs and brought $1.1 billion into Ohio’s economy.

YOU can benefit from our work.  The GCFC connects cast and crew talent directly to production opportunities by offering workshops, an affordable online FilmSkills training program, and a GCFC internship program!

Start learning today for your new Cleveland Film career tomorrow.

Greater Cleveland Film Commission Announces Leadership Transition

Motion Picture Location manager Bill Garvey named as New President|Photo by Jeff Downie

CLEVELAND, OH (July 12, 2021) – The Greater Cleveland Film Commission is pleased to announce that longtime Television and Motion Picture Location Manager Bill Garvey has been named the organization’s new President, effective September 27.

During his 26 years in the industry, Garvey has forged relationships with Marvel, Disney, Paramount, Universal, Warner Bros., Netflix, HBO and NBC. Since moving to Ohio in 2008, he has spearheaded the filming of “Fast & Furious: Fate of the Furious,” “Captain America: Winter Soldier” and “The Avengers,” among others.

Garvey’s credits prior to working in Ohio include “Shutter Island,” “National Treasure,” “Spiderman 2” and “The Manchurian Candidate.” For television, he also spent four seasons working on “Law & Order” and “The Sopranos.”

“Greater Cleveland has the architecture and infrastructure to become a major power player in the motion picture industry,” Garvey said. “Coming out of the COVID shutdown, there’s an explosion of content poised to enter production this year — a growth in production unlike any other time. But none of these movies will film in Ohio if not for the Ohio Motion Picture Tax Credit. The Greater Cleveland Film Commission has laid the groundwork for the last decade to build the industry here. There’s an urgent need to strengthen the Motion Picture Tax even further if we are to seize this substantial opportunity. The work of the Greater Cleveland Film Commission is essential to the continued growth of a robust, diverse industry workforce. These new economy jobs can keep our talented youth in Ohio while at the same time attract talent from out of state to move here. The GCFC’s partnership with the Tri-C Film Academy and Cleveland State University’s School of Film & Media Arts goes hand-in-hand with the rise of Northeast Ohio as a motion-picture hub.”

In his new role, Garvey will build upon the success the GCFC has already achieved in nurturing motion-picture investment here, and leverage his partnerships in television and motion-picture production to showcase Northeast Ohio to the world.

“We are pleased that Bill has accepted this essential role that will ensure that Cleveland will continue to grow as a motion-picture destination,” says Greater Cleveland Film Commission board chairman Tim Birch. “Under his leadership, the organization will be instrumental in attracting and generating the economic impact that will help the region thrive. His first-hand knowledge will help train and grow future industry professionals in Northeast Ohio.”

The Greater Cleveland Film Commission (GCFC) is a 501c3 nonprofit, whose mission is to create jobs and economic impact for Northeast Ohio through a vibrant film and media arts industry. GCFC was the driving force behind the Ohio Motion Picture Tax Credit (OMPTC) in 2009. Since then GCFC has attracted over 300 productions, most recently “Judas and the Black Messiah,” “Cherry” and Liam Neeson’s “The Marksman.” These projects have created 6,192 full-time equivalent jobs and brought over $1.1 billion into Ohio’s economy. GCFC connects cast and crew talent directly to production opportunities and invests in a strong local workforce by presenting workshops, seminars, FilmSkills training and internships, designed to give local talent the education, experience and professional connections to succeed in the film industry. GCFC works tirelessly to expand the film industry in Northeast Ohio, train and support a local workforce in order to generate real, sustainable opportunities that attract and retain talent.

Promote the increase of media production in Northeast Ohio using effective strategies for attraction and workforce development, including building an artistic infrastructure through film.

Achieve increased economic development in Northeast Ohio by using the artistic and culturally enriching activities of film and other media production to strengthen the workforce, support the media production industry and attract media production to the region.

Lost in Sports Episode One: Master of the Gridiron

SOURCE: Lost in Sports | Ben Baskin
May 27, 2021

The Cleveland Browns are the most tortured franchise in sports. They have never won a Super Bowl. But in 1986, in the middle of the season, the players on the team filmed a time travel sorcery movie that prophesied they would do just that— it featured the novelty-singer Tiny Tim, had ninjas and sword fighting, a castle, a shotgun, and even a black bear. Ben searches for answers about why this obscure movie was made and why no one outside Cleveland has ever seen it.

Host and journalist Ben Baskin was recently joined by former Cleveland Browns center Mike Baab and his wife Lolis Garcia-Baab, Cleveland-native directors Joe Russo and Anthony Russo, Cleveland comedian Mike Polk Jr., WKYC Channel 3 sports commentator Jim Donovan, and #ClevelandFilm Stuntman Rick Fike, as they all discuss this forgotten, barbarian-themed classic.


Join host and journalist Ben Baskin on an adventure through time as he takes on some of the biggest questions in sports history— and some you never thought to ask. Every episode of Lost In Sports explores the mysteries of the lost, the forgotten and the disappeared, and goes on a quest for answers.

Want to watch the film? You can thank The Mike Polk Jr. Show for uploading it to YouTube!