A Day in the Life of a Georgia Film Academy Student

Who needs Hollywood when the film industry is booming right here in Georgia? Stranger Things, The Ozarks, and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever are just a few productions that have been filmed in our own backyard. The Georgia Film Academy (GFA) partners with over 20 institutions, including Gwinnett Technical College and Georgia Gwinnett College, and hosts summer camps for high schoolers to help prepare the next generation for the growing film industry in Georgia. 


Ashley Nicole Green, an actress from Atlanta, graduated from Kennesaw State University in 2021 with a degree in Media and Entertainment. She has worked as a Casting Assistant, Locations Production Assistant, Set Production Assistant, and in the health and safety department. During her senior year at KSU Ashley took a class at GFA. Here’s a glimpse into her time there! 


Q: How were you introduced to the Georgia Film Academy? What motivated you to take classes?


A: I found out about the Georgia Film Academy when I was doing my own research about attending college. Because a lot of filming is done in Georgia, I wanted to stay in Georgia for college and I knew I just had to find a film program here. 


Q: What class(es) did you take? What motivated you to take them? What did you learn?


A: I took the onset training class, avid editing, and special effects make-up. I decided to take editing and special effects makeup because I’ve always had an interest in those specialties but never had the time to do it. In those classes, I learned that it takes a lot of hard work and communication to be successful in the industry regardless of your field.


Q: Tell me about your favorite project that you worked on in your special effects class.


A: My favorite project was probably the end of semester project, which is when we created a piece for our partner and had to apply it to their face. I decided to create a worn out heart and I had a lot of fun with it. 


Q: Describe a typical day in the life taking classes with the Georgia Film Academy.


A: I would wake up at seven in the morning to make it to class around 8:00 a.m. The first half of class was spent learning and watching videos about the topic and then the second half of class would be us applying what we learned to each other or the task at hand. In my case, we would practice special effects makeup on each other. 


Q: How has your experience at the Georgia Film Academy benefited your career as an aspiring actress? 


A: It has given me insights into what is needed in film departments. I strongly believe that if you understand the multiple departments on a film set it will help you become a well-rounded person, but also a very beneficial person to have on set. The GFA has benefited my career by placing me next to people who could potentially start my career. This industry is all in who you know and the fact that our instructors come straight out of the industry is very inspiring.