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We began to plan this production of Carolina Preserves in July of 1998, and the first step was selecting interview subjects. This was a difficult task, with so many interesting North Carolinians to choose from! The people we did choose represent a diverse group of citizens engaged in preserving important aspects of life in North Carolina.
Production began in January of 1999, and continued until May of 2000. The basic production crew of director Peter Thomson, Aton Chewning, director of photography, Steve Price, lighting direction, and Jeff Anderson, field audio director, visited dozens of locations from the mountains to the sea and even traveled out into the Atlantic Ocean. Along with a varying supplemental crew, and myself, the team logged thousands of miles and spent approximately 55 days on location for principal photography. And through it all, Associate Producer Andrea Sumner kept it all coordinated, making sure the right people and equipment showed up at the right place at the right time.
The crew worked hard to put the camera into places you might not expect. As a result viewers can float in space in front of a waterfall, soar off the roof of the Biltmore House and speed along on top of a steam locomotive.
Of course, the interview subjects are the stars of the show, and each one is presented in a segment designed to capture their personality, and their role in preserving a part of North Carolina.
The paintings of William Mangum represent a link to the beautiful locations available all across North Carolina. The subjects and locations are introduced and represented by one or more paintings. The entire collection of watercolors contained in the book is available for viewing on the DVD version.
The program features original music by Steven Heller. It complements music recorded on location at the Highland Games, Union Grove Fiddlers Convention, Faith Fourth of July Parade, and Pastor Shirley Caesar's Mount Calvary Word of Faith church.
The exciting new HDTV format was chosen as a way of ushering UNC-TV into the digital age. And that meant acquiring new equipment and using production techniques most often associated with film.
The extremely high resolution of HDTV produces a video product of outstanding quality, even when converted for viewing in the current broadcast and VHS formats. The DVD version of the program, although not high definition, is a high resolution digital format featuring 5 channel surround sound for those viewers equipped to display it. HDTV and DVD viewers will see the program in 16x9 aspect ratio, while viewers of the regular broadcast and the VHS tape will see a letterbox version.