Wilmington city to double as London, UK
Port City in Wilmington, North Carolina, is to double as London for select scenes in upcoming feature film London Town.
This week a small team of eight crew members and eight extras filmed pick-up shots of a London taxi driving through certain areas of the city, as reported by local online news source Star News Online.
The film, directed by Derrick Borte, follows a young boy – played by Daniel Huttlestone, (Into the Woods) - as he searches for his mother in central London in 1978 after she gives him a cassette tape of The Clash's song White Riot. The film also features Jonathan Rhys Meyers (Mission Impossible III) as Joe Strummer, lead singer of the influential punk band.
According to Johnny Griffin, director of the Wilmington Regional Film Commission, Borte had previously completed a recce in the city for a separate project, and had remembered its strong, brick-laden atmosphere – making it an effective double for London. Reportedly, during the editing process, Borte said more shots were needed to complete the film, which led to the decision to go to Port City.
In the second half of 2014 state legislators decided to strip North Carolina of their 25% tax rebate in favour of a grant scheme, essentially taking away $50m in total incentives available to productions at the end of last year.
The local film industry has been vocal about the state not prioritising audiovisual production, and there have been many calls to bring back credits equivalent to those axed, the aim being to win back productions that have ventured to more financially tempting states such as South Carolina and Georgia.