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Movies Filmed in Southport

Since the 1980's, the Brunswick Islands, Southport, Wilmington, and other local areas have been prime locations to shoot major motion-picture films and televisions shows. Southport and surrounding areas are often affectionately referred to as "Hollywood East." It's easy to see why film history has been made here—the area's natural beauty, architecture, walkability, proximity to the water, and picturesque sights make it the perfect place to shoot stunning scenes. Not only that, the cost of shooting on location in Southport allows lower-budget and indie filmmakers to get more for their money. Next time you're out taking a stroll or looking at Southport homes for sale, check out some of these popular production spots.


Best-selling author and screenwriter Nicholas Sparks loves the coastal towns of North Carolina. Based on his novel by the same name, the film Safe Haven was shot in Wilmington, Southport, and throughout the Brunswick Islands in 2012. This romantic thriller brings the story of lovers Katie and Alex to life against a beautiful backdrop, including the Wilmington Riverwalk.

Scenes from Safe Haven were also filmed at the Carolina Apartments and the Wilmington Convention Center. Believe it or not, some of the most beautiful Wilmington homes for sale have served as movie and TV sets. Don't be surprised if the area looks familiar; more than 400 films and television shows have been filmed in the Wilmington area, including Iron Man, The Conjuring, Dawson's Creek, One Tree Hill, and many others.


The seaside charm of Southport makes it an ideal setting for movies and shows like Dawson's Creek, which was set in Cape Cod. The Southport Ferry Terminal has been used as a backdrop in countless Hollywood productions. In downtown Southport, grab a bite at Fishy Fishy Café, a cute little restaurant that was transformed into the Safe Haven General Store for the film.

Many other Southport shops and restaurants were used in the filming of Safe Haven, Crimes of the Heart, The Secret Life of Bees, Matlock, and other shows and movies featuring stars like Halle Berry, Jessica Lange, Julia Roberts, Diane Keaton, Andy Griffith, Brian Dennehy, and Sissy Spacek. Pick up a map at the Southport Museum and Visitor's Center that will guide you through the Safe Haven film locations in Downtown Southport.

The cult classic I Know What You Did Last Summer used Southport's American Fish Company, the historic Amuzu Theater, the Southport-Fort Fisher ferry, the Cape Fear River, and a bunch of other sites all over the Brunswick Islands to film moody, tense scenes that had audiences on the edge of their seats.

From Southport to Oak Island, the Brunswick Islands are a North Carolina gem appreciated by locals and Hollywood. Our real estate agents can tell you more about the amazing productions that were filmed here and help you find the home of your dreams. Contact us to get started.