Filming for a $7.2 million movie about an aspiring country music singer remains on hold while a St. Helena Island producer says she is attempting to nail down $2 million in financing.
In July, first-time producer Barbara Terry said production of "Route Nashville 65" would begin by the end of August. However, filming has been delayed at least a month, she said this week.
Terry said she is negotiating with two companies -- which she said she could not name because of confidentiality agreements -- and hopes to have one signed for $2 million by mid-September.
"Obviously, we cannot go into pre-production and filming until one of these (companies) commits," Terry said.
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Neither company is local; both have been involved with similar projects before, she said.
"It's very easy to say no, and neither of them have," she said.
Terry says about $5 million has been committed for the movie, but much of it is in product-placement deals that won't be payable until the movie's final cut. Another $1 million would come from state film incentives that require Terry to meet employment targets.
Terry said that until that funding is in place, she does not have the cash to close contracts, hire crews and actors, apply for the state incentives, or arrange for film locations. That work should take about two weeks, after which filming could begin.
Terry and director and writer Ric La Monte co-own Beaufort-based movie production company Dream Coast Films. They own the rights to both "Route Nashville 65" and "My Brother, Your Outlaw: The Waylon Jennings Story." Production of the Jennings movie could begin in 2014.
Attempts Thursday to reach La Monte for comment were unsuccessful.
As she tries to shore up financing, Terry continues to stay at a beachfront home on St. Helena Island. The owners of that home, the Fess family of Beaufort, tried to have her evicted in July. However, Magistrate Joseph Kline ruled that a rent-to-own agreement between Terry and the Fesses amounted to a sales contract, which was beyond his jurisdiction.
Terry says the matter has been resolved.
David Fess said Thursday that while Terry is still staying at the house, the issues have not been resolved. He said the family is considering pursuing additional legal action
Terry said many local residents have applied to be extras in "Route Nashville 65." About 100 people also submitted songs in a $99 contest to be included in the movie, she said.
Terry's focus, however, is on the financing.
"Let's get this final money in, let's concentrate on that, and from that point on, it should only take about two weeks of pre-production," she said.
Follow reporter Erin Moody at twitter.com/IPBG_Erin.