Governor Cuomo Announces Start of Construction on New Central New York Film Hub

Albany, NY (July 18, 2014)

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the official groundbreaking of the Central New York Hub for Emerging Nano Industries in Onondaga County, which will specialize in providing advanced visual production research and education to support Upstate New York’s rapidly growing film and television industry. In March, the Governor announced that The Film House, a California-based film and television company, will be the facility’s first tenant, and move its headquarters, production, post-production, and distribution operations to Syracuse. The project will create at least 350 new high tech jobs and 150 construction jobs.

Lieutenant Governor Duffy today joined actress Gina Carano, County Executive Joanie Mahoney, community officials, and representatives of The Film House to break ground on the new facility as well as officially kick off the filming of “The Opium War” – a movie that will be filmed and produced in Central New York utilizing the new Hub’s resources.

“With today’s groundbreaking, we are officially welcoming Hollywood to Onondaga County,” Governor Cuomo said. “The facility being built on this site brings together two of New York State’s most exciting economic development programs – our aggressive film tax credit program and START-UP NY – to draw jobs and investment to Central New York. Upstate New York is coming back stronger than ever before, and today’s groundbreaking builds the momentum that can be felt here in Central New York and in communities statewide.”

The movie, starring Gina Carano, will begin filming in Central New York in the coming months, and once construction on the building is completed, all post-production work will be done at the Hub. The project will be the first in Syracuse for The Film House, which as the facility’s first tenant is moving its headquarters, production, post-production and distribution operations from California to Syracuse, creating at least 250 new high tech jobs and 150 construction jobs.

The CNY Hub, led by SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE), will focus on the use of nanotechnology to drive innovations in the computer generation imagery, animation, and motion capture technology used in film and television production. CNSE will provide $15 million to build and equip the facility at the Collamer Business Park. Over the next seven years, this project will leverage a minimum private investment of over $150 million and create up to 350 jobs.

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney said, “Thank you to Governor Cuomo for making it possible to break ground today on The Central New York Hub for Emerging Nano Industries. By embracing cutting edge technology and locating this Hub in Onondaga County, Governor Cuomo and Dr. Kaloyeros are demonstrating their commitment to creating jobs in the Upstate economy and to fundamentally changing the way we do economic development in our community.”

Dr. Alain Kaloyeros, Chief Executive Officer and Officer in Charge, SUNY CNSE/SUNY IT, said, “Governor Cuomo’s knowledge-driven economic development strategy is to build world-class industry clusters across Upstate, drawing international companies and leading-edge technologies to new York, and creating high-paying jobs from Buffalo to Albany and beyond. Syracuse is now well on its way to being a leading global center for film production and innovation. The film industry of tomorrow is being born today in Central New York, and that means new academic programs and training through CNSE, and job creation and economic benefits in communities across the region.”

President and CEO of The Film House Ryan Johnson said, “We are proud to be a partner here amidst the momentum that is the growing Upstate New York economy. Not only will we work with a first-of-its-kind education institution that will drive production innovations globally, but the Hub will help train and develop our future workforce so that we can continue to grow in Syracuse. I thank Governor Cuomo for offering incentives in this state that cannot be beat, and I am excited to officially kick off the beginning of our first movie being produced right here in Central New York.”

Onondaga County has invested $1.4 million on site to ensure the entire business park is shovel-ready, and the county IDA has programs in place to assist new tenants.