Friday, October 28, 2011

We told you so: 'Iron Man 3' coming to N.C.

You read it here first (well, not really), but it was confirmed that "Iron Man 3" will be filmed in North Carolina.

North Carolina's race to catch up with states that have lured film projects with better financial incentives has paid off with a major motion picture production commitment.

"Iron Man 3," starring Robert Downey Jr. as a comic-book superhero, will be produced from beginning to end in this state, Gov. Bev Perdue announced at EUE/Screen Gems Studios on Thursday.

"My top priority is creating jobs, and this film production will mean high-quality, well-paying jobs for North Carolinians," Perdue said. "I pushed hard to get the revamped film incentive passed, with the help of a number of lawmakers, and now we see that initiative doing exactly what it was designed to do."

Read more from the News & Observer here.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

For the famous Scotty McCreery, the OBX is where it's at

Garner's Scotty McCreery is big time. He has the No. 1 country album in America, and last night he sang the national anthem before Game 1 of the World Series.

But he's a North Carolinian through and through. He tuned up for the World Series by singing the anthem at a recent N.C. State football game, and he also recently spoke with Fox News about his favorite vacation destination, the Outer Banks.

Outer Banks, North Carolina is where I spent a lot of my summers growing up. I’ve got a seashell on the top of my dresser to remind me of some of the good times. I think there’s actually a picture in a magazine recently of me, my sister, and my mom and there’s a rainbow behind us in Outer Banks. We’d go down to Jockey’s Ridge, which is a 100-foot tall dune and eat at a lot of cool places.


Fox411: You seem to know the Outer Banks intimately, what activities do you recommend?

McCreery: There’s always a lot of stuff to do. We never went hang gliding. We wanted to do that off Jockey’s Ridge but I think I was a little too scared to do that. But we’re always in the ocean and hanging out.

Fox411: Family seems to be a crucial element for a vacation at Outer Banks for you.

McCreery: My grandma used to have this little place, we called it “the tin can.” She had a little camper type thing and we’d go there for the summers and hang out. It’s not one of those commercial beaches where there are tall buildings behind the beach. It’s just a nice place with cottages, sand and water. The family has been split apart and on different sides of the country. So it’ll be nice to get together and we’ll be heading to the Outer Banks enjoying ourselves, bring the fishing pole and have a good time.


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Gazetteer fun: V-Z

The highly entertaining and educational North Carolina Gazetteer was recently updated for the first time since it was first published in 1968.

We figured we would highlight some of our favorites from the book every now and then. This version will look at random listings that begin with letters V through Z. (Click here to see some older versions.) There are some 2,ooo-plus listings in the Gazetteer, so feel free to search for your own faves.

Valle Crucis, community in central Watauga County near the junction of Dutch Creek and Watauga River. Est in 1842 as an Episcopal mission. The name, Latin for "Valley of the Cross," was adopted because of the shape of the Watauga River there. The valley has an area of approx. 600 acres. Alt. 3,000.

Whaley, community in n(orth) Avery County. Said to have been named for one Whaley, who became frightened by a screech owl and hid in a hollow log until morning.

Xenia, community in central Duplin County served by post office, 1891-1903. Name derived from Greek word meaning hospitality.

Yadkin College, town in w(estern) Davidson County on Yadkin River. Inc. 1875, but long inactive in municipal affairs. Named for the Methodist Protestant college opened there in 1865, closed in 1924. One college building and the ruins of another remain.

Zeke Island, sandy island in the Cape Fear River opposite Snow Marsh in s(outh)e(ast) Brunswick County.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Firth, Blunt filming in Wilmington

Apparently the bad reviews of the Durham-filmed "Main Street" have not kept Colin Firth out of the Tar Heel State. He and Emily Blunt are currently filming "Arthur Newman" in and around Wilmington, according to the Star-News.

... Firth, dressed in rolled up khakis and a plaid shirt and with a small orange tent in the background, strolled down the beach Thursday afternoon near the Fort Fisher State Recreation Area, waded into the surf and tossed his top into the water, revealing a short-sleeve, white T-shirt.

The temperature, elevated by the bright sun and nearly cloudless sky, hovered around 80 and a brisk south-southwest wind blew as "Arthur Newman, Golf Pro" made its Pleasure Island debut.

Before Firth lost his shirt, the crew filmed some boats maneuvering near the shore – a scene meant to simulate a search for Firth's character based on the discovery of his lone piece of clothing floating in the water, said Pat Story, the movie's publicist.

The film planned additional shooting in Carolina Beach on Thursday and Friday nights, when the production is to close off Lake Park Boulevard from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. between Charlotte and Atlanta avenues for low-speed chase scenes.

Academy Award winner Firth and Golden Globe winner Emily Blunt are starring in "Arthur Newman," which opened offices at EUE/Screen Gems Studios last month and will shoot in the area from mid-October to mid-November.

"We couldn't be more excited," said producer Alisa Tager on the set Thursday afternoon. "We needed a place with a certain amount of geographic diversity and architectural diversity, and we found it in the Wilmington area."

Avett Brothers win big at Americana Awards

Just a few days after performing an emotional benefit show in Greensboro, the Avett Brothers, that most "Carolinian" of bands, were honored as Duo/Group of the Year at the Americana Awards. The Concord band held the same title in 2007 and 2010. Seth and Scott Avett (sans bassist Bob Crawford, who is dealing with a family health issue) accepted the award at the 10th Annual Americana Awards and Honors ceremony in Nashville Thursday.

The Avetts were among the night's performers playing "The Once and Future Carpenter." The band continues its fall tour in Dallas Friday.