Crews prep for 'Twilight' filming [SOURCE]
In the Kalama High School wrestling room medical equipment lines the walls and the framed walls of a hospital room set are rising.
KALAMA - Movie productions typically bring big bucks into the towns they locate in, but it's unclear what sort of economic boost the filming of "Twilight" will have on Kalama.
Aside from the school district - which received a $29,500 check from the production company for facility use, plus a donation to the student body - it appears the film crew is largely self-sufficient.
Catering is coming from a Hollywood, Calif., business and the crew is lodging in Portland, said movie publicist Peter Silbermann.
But set-up crews inside the Kalama High School gym, where some of the filming will occur next Monday through Thursday, said Friday they're spending locally.
"We will buy stuff all the time," said Catherine Kagan, an assistant with the location department, though big ticket items are purchased in Portland where there is no sales tax. She expects more than 100 people to be on-scene during filming next week.
"We already told Poker Pete's to buy more supplies for pizzas ... we buy a lot of gasoline here."
Another benefactor is the Port of Kalama, where crew members are paying to park their cars next week. Mark Wilson said "Twilight" is paying $400 a day for five days.
The movie is based on a best-selling novel by Stephanie Myer. "Twilight" will star Kristen Stewart ("Into the Wild," "Panic Room") as Bella Swan, a 17-year-old who moves from Arizona to live with her father in Forks, Wash., and meets a pale, mysterious but attractive young man named Edward Cullen.
Cullen is played by Robert Pattinson best known for his role as Cedric Diggory in the "Order of the Phoenix" and "Goblet of Fire" Harry Potter films.
Much of the filming is based in Washington, and Kagan said scenes have already been filmed at Clackamas Community College and Kadows Marina in Vancouver.
Ted Sprague, president of the Cowlitz Economic Development Council, said the movie could provide a larger economic boost to Kalama than what's immediately visible.
"If it's done well and makes Kalama look nice," it could become a tourism draw, Sprague said, noting that the movies "Goonies" and "Kindergarten Cop" turned into big draws for Astoria.
Movies also can provide a sense of pride and excitement for residents, said Mayor Pete Poulsen, who still remembers when Elvis stopped in Kalama in 1964.
"Those kinds of events do generate some interest," Poulsen said, though he hasn't heard a lot of talk about the movie around town. "It's exciting to have something like that happen in the community."
Kalama students seem to be some of the biggest benefactors. Those selected to appear as extras in the film will be paid for their time, which could help Kalama businesses.
"I'm confident that will go back into the stuff around town," Kalama Chamber of Commerce President Vic Leatzow said. He contacted a production representative about how Kalama businesses can be of service.
"I did meet with them Wednesday and they claim to be fairly self-sufficient," Leatzow said.
High school principal Mike Hamilton said filming could be extended to March 24 and 25 if needed, and crews expect to be gone by March 28.