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Bridge to close for filming of Walking Dead

At their Wednesday, June 8 meeting, commissioners agreed to allow the closure of Flat Shoals bridge over the Flint River from July 6-13 to allow television crews from Stalwart Films to set up and film The Walking Dead scenes for the upcoming season. ’We’ve filmed in the area for the past six years and we shoot an episode every eight days, working on a Monday through Friday schedule,’ said Walking Dead location manager Mike Riley. ‘We were looking for a bridge where we can create a set for filming. In order to create the set, we will have to close the bridge for a week. It will take a few days to set up, we will film for a few days and then wrap everything up so the bridge can reopen. If approved, we will immediately get message boards placed in the area.’ Commissioners approved the closure with the stipulation that some sort of compensation will be made to the county, such as improvement to the Flint River public access area or beautification of the area. ’If there is something we can do for the community as a whole to offset the inconvenience of filming, we would be glad to do that,’ said Riley. He said he noticed during filming at Flat Shoals last year that traffic over the bridge is light in the area during the day, with a few commuters in the mornings and evenings. He said plans for the closure were rescheduled once already and could change again. ’People wonder why we don’t film in sequence and a lot of it has to do with the cast and the availability of actors,’ said Riley. ‘Because of a conflict with one of the actors, we will not be able to wrap shooting until the following week so the bridge will need to be closed over the weekend.’ He said he had already been in contact with officials from The Shoals community and has worked out alternate routes for local citizens. ’I understand this is an inconvenience for some people and we certainly try to be very responsive to any complaints,’ said Riley. ‘We try to communicate with as many residents as we can within that travel zone.’ It was also noted that Stalwart Films pays local law enforcement as off duty officers from their payroll during filming and for security between filming days.

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