May 30, 2006
Now that parts of Crozet have been transformed into a Hollywood set, business there is booming. Evan Almighty, the sequel to Bruce Almighty, is currently filming and local restaurants are really feeling the impact.
The slow Subway franchise restaurant that is tucked back in the corner of a shopping plaza in Crozet, usually serves lunch to maybe a few dozen people. But for the last few months, Subway has been open for business, and lots of it.
"Our business has definitely gone up a lot," said Alicia Becerra, the manager at Subway in Crozet.
The manager said the production crew that is shooting the movie Evan Almighty comes in a few times a week. As you can imagine, that's a lot of mouths to feed.
"A lot of extra hours, a lot of extra work getting everything ready for lunch hour," Becerra said.
Crozet Pizza is also feeling the pressure of the lunch hour rush.
"They always come in laughing saying 'Oh you're going to be busy,'" said Moe Ewing, a Crozet Pizza employee.
Busy is an understatement. The production crew usually orders about 30 pizzas and 50 salads, which is two hours worth of extra prep work. But they know it's good for business. $700 in sales is not bad for one afternoon.
"They've doubled our sales easily during the day," said Ewing.
This is only the beginning. County officials said major films typically bring in as much as $5 million for the local economy.
This economy boost also means that hotel sales are sky-high since hundreds of crew members as well as extras are spending months here in our area.