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'The Help' Movie To Start Filming This Summer In Mississippi

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JACKSON, Miss. — Brunson Green, a producer known on the independent film circuit for movies like "Chicken Party" and "Pretty Ugly People," says he had to fight to get his first major studio picture shot in his home state of Mississippi.

DreamWorks Studios announced Thursday that the "The Help," based on the 2009 best-seller by Kathryn Stockett, will mostly be shot in Greenwood, Miss., even though it's set in 1960s Jackson.

"It was really hard for us to bring the film to Mississippi, but state officials worked to make that happen," Green said Thursday.

While the majority of the movie will be filmed in Greenwood, Brunson said a few scenes also will shot in Jackson and other cities in north Mississippi.

The book is about black maids living in Jackson, Miss., in the 1960s as the civil rights movement was taking shape.

Stockett said her "heart would be broken" if it was filmed anywhere but Mississippi.

Greenwood is a rural city with a population of about 18,000, located in the impoverished Delta region known for blues music and cotton fields. Apparently, that's what appealed to producers.

"We looked for a town that had a lot of similar aspects of Jackson in the 1960s and Greenwood fit the bill," Brunson said.

The movie will star "Zombieland" actress Emma Stone and Viola Davis, who was nominated for an Academy Award in 2009 for "Doubt."

"The Help" starts filming in late July.

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