Burt Reynolds: Grandfather To The Georgia Film Industry?

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This past weekend 81 year old Burt Reynolds premiered his new movie Dog Years. He also showed his southern comedy classic Smokey and the Bandit at the Rome International Film Festival in Floyd county.  A movie both shot in and featuring Georgia.

“I just fell in love with Georgia because of every movie that I made here, and I made six pictures here.  And they were all successful,” Reynolds said.

But none of it would have happened if it weren’t for a refusal and then an off chance meeting with then Governor Jimmy Carter.  The seventies had just begun and Reynolds had a script for a creepy film titled Deliverance that he wanted to make.  That banjo music playing in your head is for a reason.  Reynolds, desperately wanting to make the movie in his home state Florida, but then Governor Reubin Askew told him no from Tallahassee. Burt had a small cabin in NW Georgia and new of a remote river nearby.  He packed his bags and headed for Plains, Georgia.

“Well I came to the nicest man on the planet and I said can I shoot a movie here.  And the last Governor said he didn’t want me too.  And he said we’ll fix that.  And he was so nice.  You all know that, you know that.  You don’t find anybody like that.  He wasn’t a politician, he was a nice man who grew nuts,” Reynolds said.

See more at WMAZ.

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