Hollywood Comes to Oriental?


I wasn’t sure what to expect when I walked into Port City Films. I arrived to Wilmington on an empty stomach with 30 minutes to spare. Across the street I found the Goat and Compass but they only served drinks. I’m hoping there will be food at this meeting and possibly more drink, since I had wet my whistle with a Guinness or two . I’m walking into the kickoff meeting for Maureen Mountcastle’s TV pilot “The Bean” (working title) centered around my current home of Oriental, NC. She asked me to shoot production stills and wants me to meet her friend and screenwriter John Ward and the actors and actresses that will turn her vision into a reality

I entered the modern building on 3rd street and walked into the meeting room. A large and tall solid wood table was the centerpiece. Heather Cobam Brewer, author of the novel “Hungry Mother Creek”, and also a resident of Oriental was at the table, so were Maureen, producer Curtis Thieman, and marketing director Aaron Seelbinder. Spouts from two boxes of wine overhung the end of the table and an array of meats, crackers, and sweets occupied the remaining space. My hunger shall be satiated.

I took up residence at the head of table furthest from the projector screen where we would soon be Skyping in John Ward from his home in Los Angeles. On either side of me were beautiful women, a well executed locational strategy on my part. Photographers need the best seat in the house and clearly I had found it. To my left was Allie McCulloch and to my right Jane McNeill. Peter Jurasik rounded out the talent and John was now live on screen from sunny southern California.

Attention turned to the screen as John delivered his updates on the writing process. This meeting was to bring us all in to the premise of “The Bean” and hopefully convince everyone to jump on board. The setting is established, the quaint fishing village of Oriental, where everyone has a story and many prefer to keep theirs buried under veils of lies and denial. This is a place of refuge, a haven for those on the run from their past or looking to redefine their future. Everyone knows it but no one talks about it. Until they see the light, an enigmatic truth serum with unknown origins and motivations. Those who see the light are compelled to speak nothing but the truth, no matter how painful. This will be the forthright story of their transition from liar to soothsayer.

The reactions were positive and energetic. Questions from the actors were engaging and buy in to the plot was universal. The ship is sailing and we were all on board.


Stay tuned for more updates as pre-production moves forward. Click the pic to see a larger image in a new browser window and as always, Sharing is Caring!

William Conkwright

Will Conkwright is the owner at Circle Squared Publishing, LLC, a photographer, writer, full stack web developer, Google Street View Trusted Photographer, competitive cyclist, endurance athlete and adventure junky who loves riding motorcycles.

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