Two pilot film projects are gearing up to roll cameras in the Port City.
The CW's television pilot The Lost Boys and a pilot order by Fox called This Country, are listed on the Wilmington Regional Film Commission's website in pre-production.
“Pre-production basically means they are in the process of opening offices, hiring crew, determining if there are any sets that need to be built … getting everything prepared so they can go to camera,” Johnny Griffin, director of the Wilmington Regional Film Commission, said this week.
Griffin said he could not disclose details about the timing of the projects or when they will begin filming.
The Lost Boys is a new pilot order by CW for a series based on a 1987 vampire horror movie. Rumors of the project coming to Wilmington started last year.
And This Country is a Fox pilot order based on a BBC series, according to DEADLINE, which reported the show is being co-produced by Lionsgate Entertainment Co., Fox Entertainment Group, BBC Studios and Feigco Entertainment.
The projects are the first signs of film activity this year for the Wilmington area, which racked up nearly $137 million in direct spending contributed by film and TV productions in 2019. The state overall had a total of $167 million in direct spending last year from film projects statewide. It was the most spending reported in the past five years in the Port City and the state.
Local film industry leaders are also waiting on word of a second season for Hulu's Reprisal, which filmed its first season in Wilmington last year after rolling cameras on its pilot here in 2018.
Griffin, who recently went on a marketing and sales trip to Los Angeles at the end of January, said he met with officials from A&E Networks, the production company for Reprisal, and Hulu, the show's distributor, and was "told they are expecting an answer within the next two months," he said.
The visit with the two companies was among 14 meetings he and Bill Vassar, executive vice president of EUE/Screen Gems Studios, had with industry representatives during the late January trip.
Griffin said he tries to take at least one trip a year to have meetings with potential clients and share information about the Wilmington film scene to attract more projects to the area, he said.
"During our meetings in LA, clients expressed strong interest in North Carolina, and there are several projects being developed with interest in North Carolina," Griffin said. "Strength of local crew, availability of stage space and availability of incentive funding are currently driving this interest."
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