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Writers strike could affect Wilmington

WILMINGTON -- A strike by the Writers Guild of America could affect our economy here in Wilmington. Wilmington has been the set for multiple movies and TV shows that have contributed millions of dollars to the local economy. But without scripts, the industry will have less content to produce -- and less money to spend. The CW network's "One Tree Hill" is currently the largest project filmed here in Wilmington. According to the local Screen Gems Studios, the show spends more than $1 million an episode on goods and services provided by local businesses. The show currently has enough scripts already written to keep production on-track through December if writers strike. But if the issue is not resolved by then, ten of this season's episodes could be lost -- along with the revenue that comes with them. Screen Gems Studios Executive Vice President Bill Vassar said, "The people who do the catering for the show, the people who do craft services for the show, right down to the grocery store that provides the snacks in the offices. That money won't get spent." Vassar says if production of "One Tree Hill" is cut short, up 125 crew members -- most of whom are local -- will lose their jobs. Some local cameramen and businesses who serve the TV and film industry said they're concerned about the strike. Some already started looking for other sources of income until these issues are resolved.

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