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Visual effects company setting up shop in Tri-Main Center

Chris Caya/WBFO News

The state is tapping some of the 'Buffalo Billion' to train workers for the film industry and launch a new company to employ them.

The bulk of the $4.5 million grant will help Empire Visual Effects set up shop in the Tri-Main Center on Main Street in the city. The company expects to create 150 jobs over the next five years. Daemen College will also receive funding to train students.

Lt. Governor Robert Duffy says the film industry already employs thousand of people across New York and there is room for growth.

"A lot of the post-production jobs in visual effects and animation, that goes overseas. India, for example, there might be over 2,000 employees in one company doing post-production work for films here. We want to keep those jobs in the United States. We want to keep those jobs in Buffalo and Western New York," Duffy says

Duffy says the film industry employs about 91,000 people across New York.