You might recall that last summer I had the unbelievable opportunity to visit the movie set of the upcoming film Safe Haven, based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks. A huge thanks goes out to Big Honcho Media for inviting me to participate.
I can't wait to see the movie, which comes out on February 14 and stars Josh Duhamel, Julianne Hough, David Lyons, and Cobie Smulders. And, if I'm very lucky, I might be seen on screen too (don't blink or you'll miss me).
The movie was filmed in Southport, North Carolina, and used existing houses, some sets, and some repurposed buildings. It was a rainy day for our visit but we had a great time, watching a scene being filmed, talking with Nicholas Sparks, exploring the town, taking photographs and meeting the actors.
First, here's the studio's summary of the movie plot:
An affirming and suspenseful story about a young woman’s struggle to love again, Safe Haven is based on the novel from Nicholas Sparks, the best-selling author behind the hit films The Notebook and Dear John. When a mysterious young woman arrives in a small North Carolina town, her reluctance to join the tight knit community raises questions about her past. Slowly, she begins putting down roots, and gains the courage to start a relationship with Alex, a widowed store owner with two young children. But dark secrets intrude on her new life with such terror that she is forced to rediscover the meaning of sacrifice and rely on the power of love in this deeply moving romantic thriller.Sounds exciting, doesn't it? I've read the book, and I've gotten the inside scoop on some of the movie plot, and I can tell you that there is danger, excitement, new friendships, and--of course--love.
Come along with me while I visit the movie set! (Click on the images to see them full size)
You'll see from the photos that our day on the Safe Haven set was a little damp, but that didn't seem to stop the filming. When the rain came down, the movie crew covered the equipment and we all took a break.
Fishy Fishy Cafe. If you click on the link, you'll go to their website and see photos of the interior and get a peek at the menu. I had the coastal crab cake sandwich, and let me tell you -- OMG good.
After that, we had a chance to talk with Mr. Sparks about the movie, the book, and his work. Thanks to the Frying Pan Restaurant for hosting the interviews, providing yummy hush puppies, and letting us stay to party. Next week's post will be all about talking to Mr. Sparks, so let's move right along to the party!
After our interviews, Mr. Sparks graciously signed a copy of the book Safe Haven for each of us and then posed for a photograph with every one of the bloggers. (You'll see my individual photo next week.) Here's a photo of all the invited guests and another of our fantastic and generous hosts from Big Honcho Media.
The party was super fun because it was hosted by Yellow Tail Wines. We had several wines to choose from, both sweet and dry. I picked the Merlot, which was delicious. Thanks to Yellow Tail for thinking of us and for making the afternoon so relaxing.
While we sipped our wine, we got to try on a special present we got from Sole Society. A week before we headed to North Carolina, Sole Society sent us a mini catalog and we were asked to pick out our favorite shoe. I had such a hard time deciding because I really liked so many of them. One other woman picked the exact same ones I did, and you see our pretty flats in the photo.
Unfortunately the rain put the day's shooting behind schedule and we didn't have time to conduct interviews, but we were able to have a chance to chat with the stars. They were all very down to earth, kind, and accessible.
We topped off our visit by having a fantastic and leisurely dinner at Mr. P's Bistro in Southport. The wine, the appetizers, the entrees--all were fabulous. If you click on the link, you can see photos and their menu. I ordered an outstanding tuna dish, which was one of the chef's specials for the day. After dinner, we walked down the street for some ice cream, and then headed back to the hotel to get some much needed rest before leaving the glamor of Hollywood behind us.
Stop back next Thursday for more about Nicholas Sparks, the movie Safe Haven, and a chance to win a book and tickets to the movie. Watch your local listings, the movie opens on February 14.
If you want to stay current on the movie's doings, you have plenty of opportunity. Check out the Safe Haven Facebook Page or follow them on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest. Finally(!) check out the official trailer: (for some reason the trailer has disappeared. I hope it's temporary)