Big Idea Inc. Moves to Franklin, TN

Big Idea Inc., creators of the award winning VeggieTales® entertainment franchise, announced July 14 the relocation of its headquarters and animation studios from the Chicago region to Franklin, Tennessee to support its creative and production needs.
“Big Idea is thrilled to call Tennessee home,” says Chief Operating Officer Terry Pefanis. “This vibrant area of the country is not only rich in culture and hospitality, it is also the center of the Christian entertainment and country music industries. It is the ideal place for Big Idea and VeggieTales to grow and prosper.”
With 12,000 square feet of redesigned space, Big Idea’s entire executive, creative and production teams are housed in a state of the art facility at The Factory at Franklin, an environment emulating Big Idea’s modern take on timeless classics. In addition to being a member of the National Register of Historic Places, The Factory is ideally located near major distribution partners Word and EMI in Nashville, as well as several key licensees.
Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen, joined Franklin Mayor Thomas R. Miller and other dignitaries yesterday in welcoming Big Idea and attending renowned VeggieTales characters Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber to the state.
“Big Idea’s decision to relocate its corporate headquarters to Tennessee, where it began, is reflective of a growing interest in developing family entertainment in the Franklin area,” states Governor Bredesen. “Big Idea’s move here is sure to spark additional entertainment investment in this community and its workforce.”
Over recent years, Franklin has developed into one of the nation’s major hubs for family-oriented entertainment enterprises, with more than a half dozen recording, publishing, management and distribution companies. With entertainment corporations in the area generating close to $1 billion in revenue, the industry’s level of growth continues to build across the state.
David J. Bennett, executive director of the Tennessee Film, Entertainment & Music Commission, says the agency is developing an initiative to recruit more companies like Big Idea to the area.
“During the last 10 years we have seen an incredible movement of family-oriented entertainment companies coming to the southern Davidson County/northern Williamson County area,” Bennett says. “We welcome Big Idea to the region and know that it will serve as a prototype for us to refer to as we recruit like-minded businesses to the area.”
Following the governor’s welcoming announcement to a crowd of local industry leaders, families and media at The Factory, Big Idea delighted fans with a preview of VeggieTales: Sumo of the Opera, the company’s first project to be launched from its new Tennessee headquarters. Yesterday’s audience was one of the first to see The Italian Scallion take on Apollo Gourd for the World Veggie-Weight title in this fun-filled lesson in perseverance based on Hebrews 10:36.
Starring as The Italian Scallion, Larry the Cucumber has his eye on the Tiger Bike he so desperately wants to win. Unfortunately, he is a much better jokester than wrestler. The hilarious lesson in perseverance, described as Rocky meets the Mikado and the WWE, will be available in CBA market stores Aug. 28 and in the general market Aug. 31.


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