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Governor Northam Announces Production of Feature Film “Tapawingo” in Virginia

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today announced that the Foggy Bottom Pictures feature film Tapawingo will shoot in locations across Central Virginia this summer. The coming-of-age comedy starring Jon Heder (Napoleon Dynamite, Blades of Glory) and Billy Zane (Titanic, Curfew) will film in Hopewell with additional locations in Petersburg and Richmond.

Tapawingo tells the story of a listless oddball who becomes the unlikely bodyguard for a misfit teenager and finds himself in the crosshairs of the town’s family of bullies. Dylan K. Narang (Girl Most Likely) is set to direct the project, written by Brad DeMarea. The film will also star Kim Matula (The Bold and the Beautiful, UnREAL), Amanda Bearse (Married…With Children, Fright Night), and John Ratzenberger (Toy Story).

“Virginia extends a warm welcome to the cast and crew of Tapawingo,” said Governor Northam. “The film industry contributes an immediate, powerful economic impact and the opportunity to share the beauty of our Commonwealth with a far-reaching audience. From the preserved history of Harriet to the rolling landscapes of The Good Lord Bird, Virginia offers a unique palette for filmmakers.”

“Virginia’s film, television, and new media industry has been a growing source of economic development for the Commonwealth, with three major recent projects—Dopesick, The Walking Dead: World Beyond, and Swagger—injecting over $120 million into the economy during just a nine-month period,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “This industry continues to create high-paying jobs and generate instant revenue for Virginia businesses large and small.”

Tapawingo will be eligible to receive a Virginia film tax credit or grant. The exact amount will be based on the number of Virginia workers hired, Virginia goods and services purchased, and deliverables, including Virginia tourism promotions.

“The Town of Hopewell has been unwavering in its support and hospitality,” said Director Dylan K. Narang. “It is the perfect spot for our movie, and everyone we have talked to has bent over backwards to help us get this movie made. I can’t thank the people of Hopewell and Virginia enough for making my decision to film here an easy one.”

Projects previously filmed in Hopewell include Imperium, starring Daniel Radcliffe; the Oscar-nominated film Loving; the seventh season of Showtime’s Homeland; AMC’s The Walking Dead: World Beyond; and upcoming streaming series Swagger (Apple TV+) and Dopesick (Hulu).

“This will be the eighth production filmed in Hopewell over the past six years,” said City of Hopewell Mayor Patience Bennett. “The continued use of Hopewell by the film and television industry reflects the welcoming and supportive attitudes of our staff and the citizens. We are excited by the positive influence, increased economic impact, and recognition this has provided our community, and we always welcome the influx of revenue from such a production spending time and money in our city.”

“We are pleased to welcome Tapawingo to Virginia and look forward to the economic benefits that productions have on each locality they touch,” said Virginia Film Office Director Andy Edmunds. “This industry was one of the first to stimulate our hardest-hit sectors like hospitality during the past year’s challenges, and we are thrilled about the continued support these resilient projects provide.”

For more information about Virginia’s film production industry, please visit the Virginia Film Office website at filmvirginia.org. To learn more about Virginia tourism, please visit virginia.org.v