“Good energy and action!” yelled local director Richard Leder on set while shooting the pilot episode of “Azalea Coast Living,” a new infomercial-style show to boost the region. An all-volunteer film crew with several cameras, professional lighting and sound gathered on set on Thursday, Jan. 14 to film the pilot episode highlighting a local chef, wine shop owner, real estate broker, musicians and a local celebrity.
Deluxe’s new executive chef, Trinity Hunt, prepared the restaurant’s signature surf and turf dish of pan-seared scallops and brisket with polenta and organic sorrel for the cameras.
“Everyone knew the old executive chef,” Hunt said. Gaining exposure on the show is a way he can carve out a name for himself. He previously was the sous-chef for Deluxe.
Hunt prepared the meal in the staged kitchen of a new four-bedroom, three-bath home in the Citrus Cove development. Angela Batchelor, Sea Coast Realty Coldwell Banker real estate agent on the Buddy Blake team, helped Hunt cook while telling the show’s host, local actress Alice von Simson about the beaches, culture and lifestyle surrounding Wilmington. “People don’t buy a home until they love the area,” Batchelor said.
Marketing the area’s food and wine, arts and culture and natural beauty is the mission of the new website where the episode will air in February. The concept was born out of a brainstorming session by Josh Caine, executive producer of Past Present Future Digital, and Klif Kinnamon and Neal Whittington, executive producers of Zutu Marketing.
“TV is dying or is dead and the Internet is the power of the future,” Caine said. The team planned and pulled off the shoot in only a few months. The incentive was to give the local film industry some work. “It’s about trying to initiate and generate our own work,” said local producer and director Francine DeCoursey. To do so, they’ve joined forces with the local real estate, restaurant, fashion and arts communities.
“You love living here and you want to do something,” Leder said. He and everyone on set understand the importance of travel and tourism in the area.
So, they culled their professional expertise to spotlight the region’s lifestyle. Hawaiian-style Carolina Beach band, Da Howlies, is the live band for the show.
Batchelor said her friends from far away say that her life in Wilmington is their vacation. “Azalea Coast Living,” www.azaleacoastliving.com, simply aims to encapsulate that. The group plans to produce two episodes a month, which will feature paid spots by local businesses.