The film, which will star Dennis Quaid and Andie MacDowell, began production in mid-July, though the scene that will be shot in Franklin won’t take place until late October, according to the community website franklingeorgia.com.
As most of those who lived through the 1980s will remember, the film follows Ren McCormack — originally played by Kevin Bacon — as he moves to a small town in rural Tennessee. McCormack, an avid dancer, rebels against the town’s strict rules against dancing and rock and roll, and ultimately, the town’s residents accept the fact that dancing and rock music aren’t as devilish as they once believed.
The film, which is being shot in the Atlanta area, is schedule for release in April 2011.
The site for the filming in Franklin will be the Chattahoochee Bridge on Franklin Parkway, and according to city officials, it will feature the famous “chicken scene” from the original film, in which McCormack — who will be played by newcomer Kenny Wormald — is lured into a game of chicken with his love interest’s boyfriend.
Georgia has been the setting for numerous movies filmed in the state since Gov. Sonny Perdue signed the Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act on May 12, 2008. The act boosted the state’s tax credit for qualified production and post-production expenditures by as much as 30 percent. It is available not only to traditional motion picture projects such as feature films, television series, commercials and music videos, but also to innovative new industries such as game development and animation. The Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act offers an across the board flat tax credit of 20 percent based on a minimum investment of $500,000 on qualified productions in the state. An additional 10 percent Georgia Entertainment Promotion uplift can be earned by including an imbedded animated Georgia logo on approved projects.
Rep. Randy Nix, R-LaGrange, said the filming of the new “Footloose” will do much for the local community in terms of drawing revenue into the area economy. Nix represents Heard County and a portion of Carroll County.
“In general, it is very good,” Nix said. “The dollars and the multiplication of those dollars is supposed to be really good. The impact on the state has been very significant. They’re a very clean industry. They basically come in, spend a ton of money and leave.”
Residents say the filming will bring much excitement to the town.
Christopher Yung, a newcomer to the area, said the sentiment of the film very much matches the sentiment of the city of Franklin as a whole.
“It’s been awhile since I’ve seen [the original film], but I remember it,” he said. “It kind of fits the situation here. There’s nowhere to dance or karaoke or anything like that. It’s fitting for the community. They could probably just shoot it live. They don’t even have to script it. Just go and try to dance on the square and see what happens. I think it would be a great thing. The kids ain’t got much to do around here. There are no bowling alleys or pool rooms, so it’s kind of exciting that they’re doing this.”
Brenda Summerlin, an employee at the Hardee’s in town, said she’s a big fan of the original film, and she’ll certainly see the remake.
“It’s one of my favorite movies. I love it. It’s great,” Summerlin said. “I think it’d be great. I think it’d be great for Franklin, and I think it’d be great for the people who are shooting the movie. It’ll bring out this small little town. I think everybody will just get involved.”
Nicole Jackson said “Footloose” is her daughter’s favorite movie, and that it’s hard for her to get her head around the idea that they’d film part of the remake in Franklin.
“It’s kind of crazy that they’re doing it in Franklin. That’s cool. Nothing goes on in Franklin. Nothing happens here, so it’s pretty cool.”
It’s pretty unbelievable that they’d do it in Franklin.”