CJ Swank / Sam Grindstaff

Among the small businesses shuttered by shelter-in-place orders are two of Georgia’s historic art-house theaters. How are these independent cinemas surviving, and innovating, now that their screens have gone dark?

Christopher Escobar, owner of Atlanta’s Plaza Theatre and executive director of the Atlanta Film Society, said that business had already been slowing down for about two weeks prior to their closing. And Pamela Kohn, executive director of Ciné in Athens, said their decision to shut down the theater was difficult, but necessary.

Photo by Emilia Brock

A few weeks ago, screen time was blamed for keeping us apart. Now that millions of people are sequestered in our homes, our screens are bringing us together. Americans are finding new ways to find connection, community and relief from home.

Two Atlanta-based arts critics and writers, Jason Evans and Kelundra Smith, joined On Second Thought to share some reflections on the new age of streaming amid coronavirus, and recommendations of what to do for "quarantainment."

Carol Chu

The Oscars nominations were announced this year with no women nominated for Best Director, the hashtag #OscarsSoMale began trending online. In the past 92 years, only five women have ever been nominated in the category.

For some, this outrage is nothing new. In a TED Talk that went viral, Atlanta-based actress, writer and producer Naomi McDougall Jones proposed that nothing short of a revolution would break the predominantly male hold on power in the film industry.

Many Georgians are familiar with the long list of iconic movies filmed in Georgia — Driving Miss Daisy, Fried Green Tomatoes, Forrest Gump — back when filming in the state used to be a rare occurrence.

That all changed in 2008 when the film industry in Georgia exploded after the state legislature passed the Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act — making Georgia the Hollywood of the South.

As film and television executives debate whether to stay in Georgia, there’s still a push to increase the diversity of voices on set.

Stills from Parallel Love: The Story of a Band Called Luxury

Going from punk rock to the priesthood is not a common progression. Then again, Georgia band Luxury never followed the rules.

A new film called Parallel Love: The Story of a Band Called Luxury follows the Toccoa and Athens group through their brush with death and, eventually, three members becoming Eastern Orthodox priests. The documentary feature makes its Georgia premiere at the Plaza Theatre in Atlanta on Wednesday, June 19 and at Ciné in Athens on Thursday, June 20.

Courtesy YouTube

Jackie K. Cooper is a retiree who's practiced law, served in the U.S. Air Force and written seven books. The 77-year-old can now add another title to his enviable resume: YouTube sensation. Cooper has reviewed movies, books and television shows on his YouTube page for the past 12 years.

He joined On Second Thought on the line from Perry, Georgia, to explain how he went from 136 to 150,000 subscribers in less than one month on YouTube. 

This week in Georgia politics was all about the state's voting system. Rep. Barry Fleming (R-Harlem) filed a bill that proposed changing the voting machines from touchscreens to a new ballot-marking device. The bill also suggests changes to absentee ballots and voter registration.

GPB's Stephen Fowler stopped by "On Second Thought" to discuss the voting changes.


Sean Powers / Georgia Public Broadcasting

Have you ever watched a movie and wondered how it all comes together?

On my GPB podcast, "The Credits," we'll find out.

Dave Gonzalez /

Some things in life are just so bad, they’re good. Imagine being marooned in a movie theater, forced to watch the worst movies of all time… for all time. That’s the premise behind the show, Mystery Science Theater 3000. It features a human and his two robot sidekicks, on a spaceship, riffing on the movies they love to hate. Two of the stars of the cult classic are coming to Atlanta to hate on bad movies in front of a live audience.

Fulldome Film Kicks Off Macon Film Festival

Jul 20, 2017
Diana Reichenbach / GPB News


The Macon Film Festival begins tonight, but the audience will have to look up, around, and behind them to see the first film. The planetarium of the Macon Museum of Arts and Sciences is the screen for Savannah filmmaker Diana Reichenbach’s fulldome film, "Stardancer’s Waltz."

“Everybody can understand and connect through animation and that's honestly what brought me into animative filmmaking and then, eventually fulldome,” Reichenbach said.

Grant Blankenship / GPB


When Hollywood comes to your town, it can be exciting. It can also mean a lot of work.


The crew for the upcoming film "Best of Enemies" was in Macon recently. Filmmakers used the County Commission Chambers downtown as a stand in for City Hall in 1960s-era Durham, NC. For that to happen, there was a lot of 21st century stuff that had to move. That was Justin Crum’s job.


Universal Studios

From the next installments of the Avengers series to a new television series on the Unabomber, there are a lot of major productions currently filming in Georgia. Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Jennifer Brett gave us an update about the latest film and TV projects in the state.


The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention has made countless appearances on the big and small screen from the 1995 thriller “Outbreak” to an explosive debut on the first season of the hit show “The Walking Dead.”  GPB's Sean Powers walks us through some of the CDC’s most memorable roles and how the agency has been portrayed by Hollywood.  


What celebrity sightings might you be in store for this week? That all depends on what film projects are taking place around the state. We get an update on who’s currently on set from Jennifer Brett of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Buzz Blog.

Google Images

Some of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters over the past few years have something in common: their characters were born on the pages of comic books and graphic novels.

Bobby Ore Motorsports

Georgia’s $2 billion film industry has put Atlanta on the map as the Hollywood of the South, or as some describe it, Y’allywood. There’s a greater demand there for actors, producers, technicians, and … stuntmen! GPB's Taylor Gantt and Sean Powers  recently visited the school for a crash course in stunt driving.

Tom Holland / Instagram

On any given day, there's probably a film or TV crew working somewhere in Georgia. We've even caught a few crews in our building at GPB, but what are they working on? For our series "On Set in Georgia," we check in with Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Jennifer Brett about the latest film and television projects in the state.

This month, Turner Classic Movies showcases the work of early African American filmmakers dating back to the 1920s. These “race films” were compiled by Atlanta filmmaker and producer Bret Wood, who talks with us about his work to preserve a golden age of cinema that’s long been forgotten.


The movie industry is Georgia continues to grow and develop. Our state needs more actors, writers, set designers ... and stunt men!

We take a trip up to Dawsonville to visit a stunt driving school that teaches interested participants the way of the action star. Producers Taylor Gantt and Sean Powers visited the new program and received the full experience with the help of professional stuntman Bobby Ore.  

For more info on the program visit:


The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention has made countless appearances on the big and small screen from the 1995 thriller “Outbreak” to an explosive debut on the first season of the hit show “The Walking Dead.”  GPB's Sean Powers walks us through some of the CDC’s most memorable roles and how the agency has been portrayed by Hollywood.  

“Captain America: Civil War,” is a huge winner at the box office, boasting the fifth biggest box office release in history. The blockbuster hit included many scenes filmed in Georgia, which continues the trend of big budget movies choosing to film in the state. We ask Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter Jennifer Brett about the success of Civil War and find out if more superheroes will soon be seen around the state.