Screen Gems Studio in Wilmington, North Carolina is the largest television and movie studio outside of the state of California. Also known as EUE/Screen Gems Studios, it has been producing television shows, films, and commercial projects for more than sixty years.
Fully equipped to handle major projects, Screen Gems Studio boasts 10 stages, ranging in size from about 7,200 square feet to more than 37,000 square feet. Stage 10 is the largest and most modern facility, just recently completed. At 150 by 250 feet, it is the third largest stage in the United States. Opened in spring 2009, the stage also includes one of the largest special effects water tanks in the United States. In addition, the 37,500 square foot work area is column-free and the steel walls will accommodate heavy duty dollies and riggings.
Another special effects tank is located on Stage 4 and all of the stages are heated and air conditioned for the comfort of the performers and other staff members. The lots outside each stage are gated and 24-hour security is provided.
In addition, Screen Gems Studios has everything a production staff needs to craft a successful program from start to finish. This includes wardrobe facilities with laundry, dressing rooms with half baths, make-up and hair rooms, conference rooms, warehouse space shelved for props and decorations, a screening theater, and a commissary with catering facilities. On site support includes the Wilmington Regional Film Commission, a casting company, a graphic art department, special effects experts, a caterer, and more.
While Screen Gems Studio remains a busy functioning TV and movie production facility, it also serves as a popular tourist attraction for visitors to the Wilmington area. One hour public walking tours of the studio are available every Saturday from September through May and on Saturdays and Sundays during the summer months, when tourism is at its peak. The tour includes visits to the sets of current television shows being produced at Screen Gems as well as sets that were once home to the more than 350 shows and movies that were produced here in the past, including The Secret Lives of Bees, Nights in Rodanthe, One Tree Hill, Dawson's Creek, Muppets from Space, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movie, Weekend at Bernie's, and Matlock. Guides can answer questions about the movie and television industry in general and about the rich history of this studio. They also share humorous and touching anecdotes about productions that filmed here. At the end of the tour, visitors may purchase small souvenirs such as Screen Gems Studios hats, tee shirts, mugs, and other items.
Generally, no reservations are necessary in order to tour Screen Gems Studios, though visitors should arrive early on summer weekends in order to ensure a space on the tour. Reservations are available for groups of 20 or more people. Discounted prices are available for children, senior citizens, and military personnel.