'Gone Girl' filming benefits Cape Girardeau businesses
CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - You can see there are trucks, cars, cranes, lights, cones … all in downtown Cape Girardeau, and all signs of a major motion picture filming.
Now, business owners in the area said they've seen some other positive signs from the filming.
"It is a big deal for Cape Girardeau, it's not every day that you have big celebrities come to town," said Laurie Everett.
The word is out and major film stars like Ben Affleck and Tyler Perry are in Cape Girardeau to film the new movie "Gone Girl."
With the stars comes a crew and a crowd hoping to catch a glimpse.
"It is just a total buzz, the conversation, the excitement," said Robert Gentry.
"Everyone I've talked to recently is talking about the movie," said Everett.
Everett owns Annie Laurie's Antiques on Broadway.
"We've had a lot of the staff coming in buying different props and things for the movie sets," said Everett.
She said they've seen more traffic in the downtown area, both on the streets and in the stores.
"I usually walk my dog every night in downtown, and I've seen people on the courthouse lawn, you know people down by the old federal building, lots of groups of people hanging out to see if they can see anything," said Everett.
"We've seen a lot of people from downtown coming in, just curiosity seekers, just wanting to see what's going on," said Mark Dirnberger.
"We have a lot of new customers that we would not normally see that have been down to see the movie and stars," said Gentry.
Gentry owns the Corner Grocery Store on Broadway and said this is the biggest buzz he's seen in almost 20 years.
"My business personally we've seen an increase from the crew, we haven't seen too many of the stars yet, but as far as all the supporting crew and staff we've seen them in," said Gentry.
Dirnberger from Bella Italia is celebrating 10 years, he said it's more than they expected when they heard a movie would be filmed in Cape Girardeau.
"We've had some of the crew, the lighting crew, the sound crew and stuff like that, so we've definitely seen an increase in business, not overwhelming, but definitely some excitement going on down here," said Dirnberger.
Mehner with the Cape Girardeau Chamber of Commerce said some of the economic impact is from direct dollars to businesses.
But there's also the improvements to local buildings and parking lots that will have lasting effects.
"We have been very fortunate in the increase due to the movie, and we hope it continues after the movie," said Gentry.
Mehner said once the filming wraps up, which should be the end of October, the city will get actual numbers on how much the movie spent in our area.
Hotels in the area also seem to benefit from the filming.
"It is certainly exciting for the city and Drury Hotels that Cape Girardeau was chosen as the location for the filming of 'Gone Girl'. We have seen activity from the cast and crew that has increased our reservations. Our team members have commented how friendly the cast and crew have been during their stay," said Carolyn Feltner Director of Marketing for Drury Hotels.