Movie Hub/SFX Shop Locations

This may be a very vague question, but I was wondering if there is any information regarding locations for SFX Shops in specific movie hubs? So, I live in the Buffalo, NY area, and with some of the films that have been filmed here recently (and some rumors of more coming), I'm wondering if there's any chance of making a career in Special Effects while staying in this area? Or are there any suggestions as to how or where I can expect to have a better chance? 

I really want to get into SFX full time (I would love to get out of the world of manufacturing and warehouses), I know I need some more practice and experience but I'm trying to plan it out realistically. I can't really up and move at this time, but I also don't want to hold out for something here that might not happen. 
Any advice or suggestions? 


  • Thanks to online retailers you can get a lot of special effects supplies delivered to many places, which helps.  And I do know there are a number of smaller effects houses and independent artists doing high-level effects work all over the US. 

    The challenge is what type of work you are looking for, and if it can be done remotely.  For some work, it is best to operate near where the filming occurs unless you plan to travel a lot.  For example, if you want to be an on-set makeup artist you need to be able to travel to where the production is, or live in an area where productions are common.  But if you want to do lab work like producing prosthetics, that may be possible from other locations as long as you can ship your work easily.

    I'd look into what local opportunities there are for effects work, like seasonal haunted attractions, theater productions, film/tv/web production, etc.  You may want to expand your radius a bit depending on how far you are willing to travel for gigs.

  • @Chris Ellerby That is great advice and totally makes sense! I think I will have to look into focusing on a specific aspect of makeup effects, I enjoy all of it but I think the sculpting and prosthetic making is something I really enjoy the most. My first job was actually working for a haunted attraction here in Buffalo when I was 15 and I continued it up until COVID but I was only acting, not doing makeup. I've been considering (in the future) maybe opening a small shop in the area here, hoping that if more film opportunities come around then maybe I'd have a better chance of working on some big productions! 

    Thank you for the information and the advice! I really appreciate it! :) 
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