TV production on the upswing in East Tennessee

TV production on the upswing in East Tennessee

Posted:
The Travel Channel returned to Sevier County Friday to shoot a television show for the second time in six weeks. The Travel Channel returned to Sevier County Friday to shoot a television show for the second time in six weeks.

By JAMIE LYNN DROHAN
6 News Reporter

SEVIERVILLE (WATE) - Several television programs have been shot and produced in East Tennessee. Just in the last four months, four major production companies have packed their camera bags and headed for Sever County.

From MTV to National Geographic, television shows are heading for the hills of East Tennessee.

The Travel Channel returned to Sevier County Friday to shoot a television show for the second time in six weeks.

"Looking at Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg and Sevierville as all being part of what East Tennessee draw, we have been able to focus on more things," said Ricky Laney, of Ackermann Public Relations. "We have all these attractions. When you look at it in bits in pieces, it's not as impressive as it does as a whole."

Laney has served as a senior consultant for many recent television productions in the area.

"They send large crews into town, they stay at hotels, they rent cars, they fly into McGhee Tyson Airport, they eat breakfast, lunch and dinner and some even rent camera equipment," he explained. "The crew that's in right now just rented some camera equipment from a company in Knoxville."

Laney said crews can spend between $8,000 and $10,000 in just one weekend.

The television industry has a powerful effect on our tourism.

"What it doesn't take into account is the additional revenue that will be generated once they air the show, and people watch this and say, 'That's a great place, we want to go there,'" said Laney.

While television production is on the rise locally, the movie industry is also taking notice.

One of the area's newest attractions, the Titanic Museum and Attraction, has been approached by 20th Century Fox to be a part of an upcoming major motion picture.

There's no word on when that movie will go into production.

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