Small-budget film shooting in Wilmington has big names and big hopes

Published: Jun. 29, 2012 at 2:28 AM EDT|Updated: Jul. 2, 2012 at 10:37 PM EDT
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Courtesy: "Don't Know Yet"
Courtesy: "Don't Know Yet"

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - In a small, unassuming house on Van Buren Street in Wilmington, a big dream is playing out in front of the cameras.

Terry Linehan is directing the feature film Don't Know Yet based on a script he wrote about a heartbroken man looking for life's answers as he travels through North Carolina, giving rides to hitchhikers.

With big-budget productions also filming in Wilmington right now, it is easy for small productions to be overshadowed.

Linehan said the project may not have the deepest pockets, but he said the crew behind it has huge hearts to make up for it.

"Do not underestimate this movie," he said. "It is small. The budget is small. But we have attracted the talent that shows there is something to the story that speaks universally.

The talent includes some familiar faces.

James Kyson is the male lead on the project. He is best-known for his role on NBC's hit show Heroes.

Kyson read the script and said he was attracted to it. Then, Linehan drove to meet him while Kyson was in Washington, D.C., for an event. The two hit it off and Kyson signed on to the film.

The Hollywood actor said he is falling in love with Hollywood East.

"This is my first time in North Carolina, first time in Wilmington and it is a beautiful city," he said. "Good people, good air, good food; I just feel like people have good souls here."

Starring opposite Kyson is Lisa Goldstein, who many locals will remember for her role on One Tree Hill.

The actors film a quirky scene between on screen husband and wife, played by Bill Ladd, who is fresh off of filming a movie with Meryl Streep, and Jane McNeill Balter, who is best known for her current roll on The Walking Dead.

Supporting this cast of professionals are a crew of current students from UNCW's Department of Film Studies, where Linehan teaches aspiring, young filmmakers.

It's a formula he's always wanted to try.

"To get the equipment and manpower from the students, it's something I've always wanted to do and finally all of the pieces came together," Linehan said. "Then to attract the kind of acting talent we have - that was a bonus."

The production is filming for two weeks in Wilmington, with support from the college and local businesses.

Queensboro Shirt Company donated the wardrobe for the film.

While in Wilmington, they will shoot on location at the Goody Goody Omelet House, Lula's Pub, and Jackson's Big Oak BBQ.

Then, the story takes Linehan, the cast and crew across the state, shooting in several locations near Asheville.

"This is a love letter to the state of North Carolina because of the beautiful places we will be visiting," Linehan said.

Linehan hopes to enter the film in festivals around the country. He would also like to see it get picked up by a distributer for worldwide screenings.

Copyright 2012 WECT. All rights reserved.