WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Escape the world we’re living in by going on a Goonies-inspired treasure hunt along the Carolina coastline.
Outer Banks, which premieres on Netflix April 15, was created by Wilmington’s Jonas Pate, his brother, Josh, and their partner, Shannon Burke.
The show is a coming-of-age drama that has been described as a mash up of The Outsiders and The Goonies.
“Who didn’t like The Goonies?” Pate asked when we interviewed him over Zoom. “We watched it one million times. I watched it with my kids and I saw how they reacted to the stories. I created this with my brother, Josh, and our partner Shannon and we just wanted to do a story like that for this generation.”
The show follows a group of friends who go on a treasure hunt in a fictional North Carolina town.
“There are a bunch of friends who live on the Outer Banks in a mythical town called Pelican, North Carolina - that doesn’t exist,” said Pate. “It’s sort of a have and have-nots kind of town. There are a bunch of poor kids and a bunch of rich kids and the poor kids go on this adventure.”
Pate wanted to film the show in Wilmington, but that did not work out due to concerns Netflix had about House Bill 2, the so-called bathroom bill, which was passed in 2016 and was later repealed.
“Of course, we wanted to shoot it in Wilmington,” Jonas Pate said. “We wrote it with a lot of Wilmington locations in mind. You’ll hear your Masonboro get mentioned and other Wilmington locations. But we weren’t allowed to shoot here because of some residual effects of HB2, which thankfully are going off the books. So, we shot it in Charleston but we wanted to bring more projects to North Carolina. That’s why we moved back here and the community here has been really supportive. Senator Harper Peterson is working hard to get film going in the state legislature so I’m pretty confident it’s going to come back. It’s just a short-term problem.”
Pate said if the show does get picked up for a second season, he’s unsure where or when shooting would begin due to the coronavirus outbreak. All productions across the country shut down once the pandemic hit the U.S.
Still, the timing is good to release a new show to the streaming service. It comes to Netflix as much of North Carolina and the nation are under stay-at-home orders to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
“Who would’ve anticipated this crazy scenario that we are all in but it does seem like a lot of people are going to be home and able to watch it,” he said.
Pate hopes it helps audiences get a much-needed break from reality.
“It’s escapist,” he said. “It’s not a downer. I think it’s a fun show you can watch with your family, you can watch with your kids, you can watch with your grandmother. I think it’s exciting. There are a lot of things about the Carolina coast that you’ll recognize."
Learn about the show here.