Locals say feature film is opening doors and opportunities

Card Counters usually don’t last long in casinos, but apparently some are here to stay in South Mississippi, at least as long as filming continues for the highly anticipated movie “The Card Counters.”

Oscar Isaac, Tiffany Haddish, Tye Sheridan, and Willem Dafoe are just a few of the A-list actors in this film, directed by Paul Schrader and with the recent addition of Martin Scorsese as executive producer of this revenge thriller, if you’re 18 or older you can even have your 15 seconds of fame as an extra.

Card counters usually aren’t welcome at Coast casinos, but the IP Casino in Biloxi is rolling out the red carpet for them this month, a real cast of characters to say the least.

Including some A-list actors you likely know who will be starring on the big screen in the feature film “The Card Counter.” Producer Braxton Pope said, “It’s about a gambler. There are many scenes in casinos so obviously there’s a lot of different filming opportunities in the casinos.”

Pope traveled all the way from Los Angeles for the shoot. He has a busy schedule, but he took time out to reflect on his first time to visit South Mississippi.”The first thing that strikes you is just how incredibly hospitable the people are. There’s an openness, a friendliness.”

Pope says the state’s tax incentives for filmmakers helped make the Gulf Coast stand out as a choice film location. “When you have a production, you’re placing orders with vendors. You’re bringing in crew. You’re bringing in cast, hotel rooms, restaurants, purchasing, any number of things you need for the production.”

Shooting of the revenge thriller has been underway in our area for several weeks and has opened the door for locals like WXXV’s own production assistant Andrew Kea. “I feel like I’ve learned more here in the past two years since I started my career in filmmaking.Now, I get to live it every day.”

Speaking of counting cards, they’re upping the ante as filming continues. They’re looking for a thousand locals for extras next week. Casting Director Cher Foley said, “We’re looking for some very specific types in this movie, because it is in a casino. It is heavy, the poker aspect. We need poker dealers, expert poker players. We’ve got two scenes coming up, two big days that we’re shooting next week. I need lots of people.”

Once filming wraps with that last martini shot, you can bet on an encore and you can place your bets on more movie making magic rolling out from this film crew.

If you are 18 or older and would like to be an extra in this movie just head over to the Facebook page for ‘Casting the Coast.’

You’ll find all the information you need to know, including a training session for extras scheduled for this Saturday.

Casting Director Cher Foley says everyone is welcome to apply and they’re also looking for actual casino workers or people who have worked in casinos for next week’s shoot.

Extras are needed next week on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

Categories: Featured, Harrison County, Local News, News

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