It's hoped that a new stage at Screen Gems will bring bigger and better movies to the Wilmington arena. It's called Stage Ten, and for special effects producers it's a dream come true. The new stage comes at a perfect time, as Screen Gems pushes for higher film incentives in our state to make us more competitive. The one thing that sets this stage apart from any other on the East Coast is a little something on the inside, a water tank holding 450 tons of water, which may just entice big movie producers to film here in Wilmington. "You can create waves, you can create wind over water, you can create rain and fog, and then you can surround it in a green screen and put in your special effects in after," said Bill Vassar of Screen Gems. The tank is one of the largest indoor water tanks on the East Coast. The construction comes at a time when Wilmington film officials are trying to recruit major producers from the other coast, all in an attempt to keep Wilmington on the map. Taking a look at the final product, project manager Chris Crowder said the new stage is a dream come true for producers. “That's 37,000 square feet of open floor space to build your dream!" Wilmington recently lost a Miley Cyrus movie to Georgia because that state offered double the incentive, or tax break, to production companies that North Carolina does. A bill to raise our incentives is currently stuck in committee in Raleigh. Perhaps this new sound stage will inspire legislators to move it to a vote.
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