Want to work in the film industry?

PRESS RELEASE by: The West Virginia Filmmakers Guild and the West Virginia Film Office

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Interested in working in the film industry? The West Virginia tax incentive has been recently restored attracting more productions to the state and there is a growing need for more Grip and Electric positions.

West Virginia Filmmakers Guild and the West Virginia Film Office will be holding a Grip and Electric workshop taught by Larry Dowling. The workshop will run 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 25-26 at the WV Public Broadcasting studios in Morgantown. There is limited space so it is important to sign-up ASAP. Lunch, snacks and drinks will be provided.

The cost is $120 . Buy tickets now at https://wvfg.ticketleap.com/

This is an amazing opportunity and a great investment for those interested in working in the G&E department and for any filmmaker that would like to level up their lighting skills.


1. GRIP TRUCK – The equipment in a grip truck is extensive. You will get a working knowledge of everything that is inside as well as learn the references or “lingo” of the trade aka Gripology.

2. LIGHTING – Hands on lessons that will teach you how to properly set up equipment, build frames and diffusions, source lighting (Tungsten, LED, HMI), learn how to shape light, and tools expected to have on set.

3. BUSINESS – Invaluable information on how to seek jobs, manage your taxes, pay rates, and protocols for Union vs Non Union projects.

Larry Dowling is an award-winning filmmaker based in Morgantown, WV. He has over 35 years of experience working in film and television and close to 40 years of experience in theatrical lighting. He has spent decades working as a Director of Photography, Gaffer, and Key Grip for numerous networks, movies, documentaries, television shows, and production companies. He has trained hundreds of film professionals as an instructor at workshops and by teaching at the George A. Romero’s Filmmaking Program in Pittsburgh, PA. Larry is also the co-owner of Appalachian Grip and Lighting which provides modern lighting equipment to the film industry.

“They just passed the tax credit this past July, so there’s a need for more grips and electricians to start working on more independent films that are coming into the state,” said Justin Owcar, West Virginia Filmmakers Guild President in an interview with West Virginia Public Broadcasting. “So we want to be able to help more people that would be interested in the industry and train them and give them the opportunity when these productions do come into the state.”

The film industry in West Virginia generated $120 million in wages and around 5,800 jobs with eight television series like Underground Marvels and Mountain Monsters being produced in-state throughout 2020 and 2021, according to the Motion Picture Association.

Dave Lavender, a workforce coordinator with the West Virginia Department of Economic Development, has been helping with film inquiries coming into the state. He said attracting film crews to West Virginia is great for economic development, supporting local economies and creating new jobs during the filmmaking process.

“We really believe in trying to create opportunities here, for everyone in West Virginia, so that if somebody wants to work in film, and work in the creative industry, they can do it here, they don’t have to always be traveling out of state to work,” Lavender said. “We want people to be able to be able to work and live and play in West Virginia as much as possible.”

Space is limited. For those interested please sign up ASAP. Film productions are underway and this invaluable workshop can give you a jump start for your career in film production.

For inquiries and more information contact Justin Owcar, president of the West Virginia Filmmakers Guild at wvfilmguild@gmail.com

Contact Dave Lavender, who works on film and apprenticeships/workforce for the WV Department of Economic Development at David.L.Lavender@wv.gov

For more information about the West Virginia Filmmakers Guild go online at http://westvirginiafilmguild.com and for more information about the new WV Film Office go online at https://westvirginia.gov/wvfilm/


Related stories

Give us your feedback