Three years after playing the backdrop for Spielberg’s Lincoln, Virginia once again will be the main film location for another feature film and television series. This time, it’s for Ithaca, with Meg Ryan at the helm as director, and for Season Two of the AMC new drama series TURN.
Ithaca will begin production this month and filming will continue through the summer in Petersburg and Richmond, Virginia. Ryan has been visiting Old Towne Petersburg to scout locations and even dropped in for lunch at Wabi Sabi.
In addition to directing the movie, Ryan will star in it alongside her former leading man Tom Hanks (also the movie producer) and her son Jack Quaid. Sam Shepard has also signed on as part of the cast.
It was easy for Ryan to decide on Virginia as the location for her film. "The welcome we have received from Gov. McAuliffe and the Commonwealth of Virginia has been lovely," said Ryan. "We're surprised by the cinemagraphic opportunities, the talent of the filmmaking community and the variety of resources at our disposal. We couldn't be more delighted to be here."
The feeling was mutual from Virginia as well. "We couldn't be happier that Meg Ryan has chosen Virginia as the location for her directorial debut," Gov. Terry McAuliffe said in a statement. "We are excited to have the opportunity to work with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks on this film about an important time in American history."
Virginia Film Office Director Andy Edmunds is also thrilled to have Ithaca setting up production in the state. “Ithaca supports our mission of bringing jobs to the Commonwealth and expanding our workforce in television and film production," said Edmunds. "It will provide exceptional opportunities for our crew and actors, as well as for Virginia businesses that provide goods and services for films.”
If all goes according to plans, Ithaca (a WWII film based on the 1943 novel The Human Comedy by William Saroyan) will have a 2015 release. I'm a huge fan of the Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks duo ever since Sleepless in Seattle and You've Got Mail, and can't wait to see them together again in a feature film.
In addition to Lincoln and Captain Phillips, two major feature movies to have recently filmed in Virginia, the AMC new spy drama TURN also joins the A-list roster. The series' first season was shot entirely in both Petersburg and Richmond, and starting this fall, its second season will be back in Virginia for more filming.
"Virginia has been an absolutely ideal home for 'Turn,'" said Joel Stillerman, AMC Networks executive vice president of Original Programming. "The abundance of great locations and support resources have surpassed our expectations," said Stillerman. "It's just a great place to make high quality television."
Edmunds welcomes the AMC series back to Virginia and considers the second season a "huge win" for the state. "A television series is a gift that keeps on giving for the production industry in the Commonwealth," he said. "We are thrilled that the ongoing job and infrastructure expansion that occurred during Season 1 will continue." TURN is expected to bring in approximately $45 million to its filming locations - the Richmond and Petersburg areas.
“The first season of TURN was exciting, entertaining and educational, and I never missed an episode. We are delighted to welcome AMC back to Virginia for Season 2,” McAuliffe said in a news release. “ We are proud to be associated with such a high-quality endeavor that also provides jobs and financial benefits for Virginia workers and businesses.”
TURN Season Two will premiere in the spring of 2015. Until then, you can watch the entire Season One on Amazon Prime Instant Video.
For information on filming in Virginia, visit the Virginia Film Office, a LocationsHub client.
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CREDIT: Banner image via Google.