BY BRYNA ZUMER, firstname.lastname@example.org
4:40 PM EST, January 10, 2012
Edgewood and Joppatowne are about to play host to the back lots for a major original series on Netflix featuring Kevin Spacey, called "House of Cards."
The show's production team has leased about 100,000 square feet of warehouse and office space in Harford County so far, county economic development director Jim Richardson said Tuesday.
Although "House of Cards," filming for which is expected to start in March, is set in Washington, D.C., and deals with federal politics, Richardson said Harford County should feel some positive economic impact from the many technicians, carpenters and other specialists who will pour into the Baltimore area to work on the show.
Besides Oscar award-winning actor Kevin Spacey, the production team will include the likes of David Fincher, of "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," and John Melfi, producer of "Sex and the City."
"All the staff, and a bulk of the production, will be here in Harford County," Richardson said. "I am fairly certain that this will be a positive for us. They will be actually building sets and doing a lot of fabrication of things … You will be seeing people having dinner in Harford County that may look familiar."
Richardson would not disclose exactly what sites or properties the film crew has leased.
"They have locked in for one year and we are hoping to lock them in for two years," he said.
Jack Gerbes, director of the Maryland Film Office and a Forest Hill resident, said the production team looked at four other counties and Baltimore before settling on Harford. The Baltimore Sun reported last week that filming would be done in Baltimore and the Harford County government announced Monday that the production facility would be based in Harford County.
The estimated economic impact for Maryland as a whole will be in excess of $75 million, he said.
"Locations have yet to be determined, but what I can tell you is that this series is set in the halls of power of Washington, D.C.," Gerbes said. "The fact that a lot of this production will take place in Harford County will mean economic activity in Harford County … Harford County officials, economic development and the county executive's office were very helpful in attracting this production to the county."
The show will be one of the first series to be shown exclusively online, on Netflix. The website agreed to show a 13-series pilot, and is considering filming up to 26 additional series, Richardson said.
"House of Cards" is based on a novel and a British miniseries with the same title.
It will be similar to movie-like shows such as AMC's "Mad Men" or HBO's "Game of Thrones," he said.
"We don't know enough about the script to know what it is all about, but given the people that are heading this up, it's going to be first-class," Richardson said.
The last major Hollywood production to be based in Harford was "Tuck Everlasting," which was filmed in 2002.