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Zombies Take Over the Screen in Spokane

The national zombie craze is going to mean some exciting business for the Spokane area. A local film production company made a big announcement Wednesday, that caught the attention of Mayor David Condon and other city officials.

Mayor David Condon said to the crowd, "I’m glad I didn’t get to be a zombie, I get to do that everyday, but I’ve dressed in crazier outfits.”

The comment came in reference to the news that North By Northwest would soon begin production on a television series for the ScyFy network called 'Z Nation', which features zombies. The show will begin in production for 13 episodes with shooting starting in May.

Rich Cowan of North by Northwest says this is a major break for his company and the Spokane region.

Cowan: “Once you start a series other people will notice, like where was that shot? and then we’ll get more jobs, and when people discover Spokane and how easy it is to shoot here, we don’t have the traffic problems, and it’s a small industry and people talk a lot.”

And he says in the short term it means new jobs for the region. Cowan says “these are union jobs that pay pensions and healthcare." He says NxNW has over 200 actors that will be working, and 1,300 extras, mostly zombies. Cowan says many of the actors will be chosen from Spokane’s theater community.

North by Northwest was started in 1990 in Spokane. They have offices in Spokane and Boise and have produced over fifty feature films. This is the first TV series they have worked on.

Steve was part of the Spokane Public Radio family for many years before he came on air in 1999. His wife, Laurie, produced Radio Ethiopia in the late 1980s through the '90s, and Steve used to “lurk in the shadowy world” of Weekend SPR. Steve has done various on air shifts at the station, including nearly 15 years as the local Morning Edition host. Currently, he is the voice of local weather and news during All Things Considerd, writing, editing, producing and/or delivering newscasts and features for both KPBX and KSFC. Aside from SPR, Steve ,who lives in the country, enjoys gardening, chickens, playing and listening to music, astronomy, photography, sports cars and camping.
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