Friday, May 27, 2011

Two N.C.-filmed TV pilots will continue shooting ... in L.A.

According to the reports, two television series that filmed pilots in North Carolina won't be returning to North Carolina to film regular episodes.

The StarNews of Wilmington reports ABC's "Revenge" and The CW's "Hart of Dixie" will film in the Los Angeles area.

EUE/Screen Gems Studios executive vice president Bill Vassar says the stars in the shows wanted to stay on the West Coast to be near their families. Vassar is waiting to hear about a feature film that could open production offices in Wilmington next week.

The HBO comedy series "Eastbound & Down" begins filming a third season in Wilmington in July.

Dr. Beach likes Hatteras

The beach at Cape Hatteras was named the fifth-best beach in the country in an annual survey by Florida International University professor (and NCSU graduate) Steven Leatherman, who is also known by the friendly nickname "Dr. Beach."

Leatherman ranks beaches on 250 criteria, including the look and feel of the sand, water quality, weather, facilities and crowds. A top score is 250.

Leatherman described the beach at Cape Hatteras as "providing some of the best board surfing along the East Coast, as well as the most famous lighthouse in the United States, Cape Hatteras attracts beachgoers to its historic fishing villages."

The best beach in the country is Sarasota's Siesta Beach. ...

San Diego's Coronado Beach was runner-up. Rounding out the top 10 were No. 3, Kahanamoku Beach in Waikiki, Honolulu, Hawaii; No. 4, Main Beach, East Hampton, N.Y.; No. 5, Cape Hatteras in North Carolina; No. 6, St. George Island State Park, Florida Panhandle; No. 7, Beachwalker Park, Kiawah Island, S.C.; No. 8, Coast Guard Beach, Cape Cod, Mass.; No. 9, Waimanalo Bay Beach Park, Oahu, Hawaii, and No. 10, Cape Florida State Park near Miami.

A No. 1 spot on the popular list annual typically brings a 15-to-20-percent boost in visitors for the beach destinations.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Scotty wins 'Idol,' continuing N.C. dominance

In case you live under a rock, then you are not aware that Garner's Scotty McCreery won season 10 of "American Idol" last night. Congratulations to the guy that has been described over and over and over again as a wonderfully genuine young man.

McCreery joins High Point's Fantasia Barrino (season three) as winners of the singing contest, while Raleigh's Clay Aiken was runner-up in season two. Others from N.C. that have done well include Chris Daughtry of Lasker (third place in season five), Kellie Pickler from Albemarle (fourth in season five), Bucky Covington from Rockingham (eighth in season five) and Anoop Desai of Chapel Hill (sixth place in season eight).

Needless to say, North Carolina was pretty excited for McCreery, according to WRAL.

More than 8,000 of those fans packed into the RBC Center in Raleigh for a viewing party Wednesday night. They made a thunderous roar when "Idol" host Ryan Seacrest named McCreery as the winner.

Three of his biggest fans – childhood friends and part of the Blue Crew, a student fan club at Garner Magnet High School – were at the RBC Center Wednesday.

The trio was also at the first viewing parties when fewer than 100 people gathered in Garner to watch McCreery at the start of this season of "American Idol."

"From that to last night at the RBC Center, home of the Wolfpack and the Hurricanes, 8,200 people screaming for Scotty – it doesn't get much better than that," Garner High student Colin Perry said.

McCreery's friends said they can't wait to see him again. McCreery has said he doesn't know how his world will change, but he hopes to get home soon.

"I'm going to have some fun and celebrate with my family, and I can't wait to get back to Garner," he said.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

GQ calls Asheville a ‘rad city’

In the May issue of GQ, Stan Parish writes what many North Carolinians already know — Asheville is awesome. | story and photographs

The stickers are everywhere — on the windows of dive bars, used-record stores, head shops, and the omnipresent yoga studios. “Love Asheville,” they read. “Local Is the New Black.” Yes, they’re a little twee. But after a few meals, a few local microbrews, and a rock show or two, you realize that loving Asheville’s basically a reflex. The city of 80,000 is an anomaly in its home state, with its indie-music cred, ambitious restaurants that could hold their own in San Francisco, and a panorama of the Blue Ridge Mountains that will have you turning circles just to take it all in. The locals are too modest and well- mannered to say this themselves, but we’ve got a better slogan for that sticker: “Asheville is the new Austin, with a better view.”

Thursday, May 19, 2011

End of the line coming for 'One Tree Hill'

Full disclosure: I'm a big "One Tree Hill" fan. Haven't always been, but what can I say?

Anyway, it looks like the Wilmington-filmed (and quasi-based) TV series will be wrapping it up in the very near future, according to the Star-News.

The CW announced its new fall schedule today, but “One Tree Hill” wasn’t on it. The locally filmed series will be held for midseason. And according to a CW release, season nine will be the show’s last.

The CW has ordered 13 episodes, and while the release doesn’t specify that the final season will only be that long, it’s unlikely more episodes will be ordered. Though with this show, never say never.

Filming of the new season will start in Wilmington this July. If there are only 13 episodes, and “OTH” doesn’t need to replace any failed new series early, the show will completely wrap filming by the time the ninth season starts.

Here’s what the CW says will happen in the final season: “In season nine, how will Brooke and Julian juggle parenthood and their very young careers? With Nathan traveling more as an agent, how will Haley’s life change with a second child, an increasingly independent Jamie, and a busy cafĂ© to run? Is a wedding in store for Quinn and Clay? Or Mouth and Millicent? And what’s to become of Alex and Chase and their burgeoning romance? Following a fictional four year jump in time, “One Tree Hill” has now spent four seasons exploring the experiences of twenty-somethings. Season nine will continue to grow and break new ground, as the show approaches the rarified air of 200 episodes.”


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Roanoke River among America's most endangered

From WTVD:

North Carolina made another list Tuesday, but this isn't one we'll brag about. The environmental group American Rivers announced the state is now home to one of the nation's ten most endangered rivers.

The Roanoke River - which flows from Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains to North Carolina’s Outer Banks - slots in at number three. American Rivers says the watershed provides water to more than one million people for drinking, farming, fishing, and boating.

American Rivers said the problem is not what's in the river now, but what could happen if Virginia lifts a ban on uranium mining.

"There's so much we don't know and there's so much we can't control," explained Andrew Lester with the Roanoke River Basin Association.