Christmas movies preparing to film in Capital Region

Half Baked 2, a sequel to the 1998 cult hit movie, is preparing to film in Baton Rouge.

With news of a wrestling drama starring Zac Efron, a Christmas movie for a major cable network, and a planned film in which LSU will play itself, Baton Rouge’s film sector appears to be rebounding from the pandemic doldrums.

“Millions of dollars [in planned spending] in the fourth quarter, so things are looking good,” says Katie Pryor, executive director of the Baton Rouge Film Commission.

The original Half Baked, a stoner comedy starring Dave Chapelle, was not a box office hit but gained popularity in home video following the success of Chappelle’s Show, the comedian’s TV show. The cast of the Universal Studios film has not been announced.

Meanwhile, Covington-based Evergreen Films is producing Family Christmas, which is the working title of a film that will be set in Ascension Parish and premiere on a major network this Christmas, Evergreen’s Daniel Lewis says. Shooting begins this week.

Lewis describes the film as a “heartwarming story about a family reconnecting over the holidays.” He says the names of local cities and businesses where the production shoots won’t be changed, providing “a lot of good exposure.”

“I think this is a great sign for the city,” Lewis says of the new activity. “I think it’s going to provide a lot of good job opportunities for locals who are either already in the business or want to get into the business, and also provide tons of opportunities for local vendors.”

This story originally appeared in a Sept. 2 issue of Daily Report. To keep up with Baton Rouge business and politics, subscribe to the free Daily Report e-newsletter here.