News Column

SC Film Commission app highlights movies filmed in Beaufort County

August 24, 2014

By Dan Burley, The Island Packet (Hilton Head Island, S.C.)

Aug. 24--Most residents and visitors know that the movies "Forrest Gump" and "The Big Chill" were filmed partly or entirely in Beaufort.

But what about forgotten flicks such as "White Squall," a 1995 movie starring Jeff Bridges, or "Night Walk," a 1989 made-for-TV drama filmed on Hilton Head Island?

A new free app released by the S.C. Film Commission provides a filmography of all feature movies and television shows filmed in the state -- including in Beaufort and Jasper counties -- during the past century.

Ostensibly, Film SC is designed for directors, producers and location scouts. It provides a quick look at filming in the state -- from driving distances and the availability of film crews, to a list of film incentives and even what the foliage is like in different parts of the state at different times of the year.

But for visitors, residents and South Carolina film buffs, the fun part is the quick chronicle of the state's film history and locations.

The app lists 28 feature films, television shows, cable movies, movies of the week and miniseries filmed at least in part in Beaufort and Jasper counties since 1979. The first was "The Great Santini," Hollywood's version of the coming-of-age novel written by Beaufort'sPat Conroy. However, Beaufort County Library archives show five feature-length films, which are not on the app, produced in the county before then. "The Rise and Fall of the Confederacy" was the first, in 1917.

Beaufort, with its antebellum mansions cloaked by moss-draped oaks, has been the site of 22 productions, including "G.I. Jane," "Forces of Nature" and "The Jungle Book," according to the app.

Hilton Head has been the host of two productions: "Night Walk" and "Something Borrowed, Something Blue."

Four movies, including the Joe Pesci-Danny Glover comedy "Gone Fishin,'" have been filmed in whole or in part in Jasper County over the years.

In all, 109 feature films have been shot in South Carolina between 1914 and 2013. And since 1979, at least one feature film has been made every year.

In addition to feature films, 54 cable movies or movies of the week, 26 TV shows and five TV miniseries have also been made in South Carolina.

Last year, state lawmakers sweetened incentives for film productions and now allow production companies to be reimbursed 20 percent on payroll taxes for wages for out-of-state workers and 25 percent for state residents. Productions also can save up to 30 percent on taxes when buying at local businesses. The breaks kick in once a production spends $1 million.

"One movie can make a difference to the local economy," said Beaufort Film Society president Ron Tucker.

The app puts filmmakers one touch away from learning what the city has to offer, he said. Couple that with the incentives, and "filmmakers know they'll be greeted well here. It's just a recruiting game now."

The app is for Apple tablets and iPhones. It can be downloaded from the iTunes store.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

Follow reporter Dan Burley on Twitter at


(c)2014 The Island Packet (Hilton Head, S.C.)

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Source: Island Packet (Hilton Head, SC)

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