‘Hollywood’s Night Out:’ Moviemaker Magazine ranks Knoxville in top 10

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Knoxville is getting ready for “Hollywood’s Night Out” Sunday night. Movie lovers are getting all dressed up to watch the Oscars at none other than Regal Headquarters.

WATE 6 On Your Side anchor Lori Tucker is emceeing tonight’s glamorous event, which is also a fundraiser for kids in the area.

For the second year in a row, Knoxville has made Moviemaker Magazine’s top ten list of cities for filmmakers to work and live.

Lori caught up with the man who helps bring film projects to Knoxville to learn about what makes our city ideal for making movies.

98% of The Last Movie Star, with Burt Reynolds, Chevy Chase and Ariel Winter was shot here in Knoxville, with a few scenes were shot in Nashville, which truly made this a Tennessee project.

Ten features have been shot here over the past four years; Curt Willis, film director for Visit Knoxville, says more are on the way.

“There are some projects it looks like we’re gonna get. We will have well known household names as far as the actors are, and as long as everything falls into place… it looks good right now.”

Curt Willis

Willis won’t divulge any of those big names just yet, but he does say the films will be in the $5-million budget range like the “Last Movie Star.”

Knoxville has a lot to offer when it comes to business, “It’s all about film incentives right now,” Curt Willis said.

“We do have a lot of different looks…we can look like a big city, we can look like a charming small town. We’ve got a lot of lakes and rivers and forests, so we have a lot of different looks. We don’t have an ocean but that’s about the only thing.”

Curt Willis

So far we don’t have a new project in the works by Knoxville native Quentin Tarantino, who’s up for Best Director at the Oscars for “Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.”

“Quentin, Quentin, if you’re listening, please bring a project here, that would be wonderful. He’s one of my favorites.”

Curt Willis


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