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"Lights, Camera, Action" in NC

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WILMINGTON — North Carolina and other states have lost big money recently to Canada when it comes to movie and TV production. But things are picking up and cameras are once again rolling in Wilmington and elsewhere in the state.

As a building burns along Highway 133, the cameras roll, actors respond and North Carolina claims another production. "Holy Joe" a CBS Movie of the Week starring John Ritter and Meredith Baxter, will shoot for 20 days.

"It's really any mythical American Main Street town, about an average American guy and we could find that here in Wilmington," said the film's executive producer Adam Peck.

What 'Holy Joe" also found here was talented crew members.

"You have some marvelous people here. Cameramen, grips, electricians, all departments, sound, just superb," said director Larry Peerce.

John Ritter, as Reverend Joe Cass, has a life-changing experience in a burning building. Also starring is Gary Basaraba as Reverend Joe's friend.

Many productions like this are filmed in Canada because it costs less. A U.S. dollar is worth almost $1.70 in Canada.

Movie and television production means jobs for extras like these and the crew. For this particular production several hundred are involved.

"Holy Joe" is one of several productions under way, some of them big budget features like "Patch Adams," "Bruno" and the $40 million "Boys Are Us."

Typically, movies of the week cost between $3 million and $4 million dollars to make.

"Holy Joe" will be seen on CBS but no air date has been set.


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