GASTONIA, N.C. -- There was a lot to see on the usually quiet streets of Gastonia Tuesday afternoon, as production crews filmed several scenes for a new TV series called “Shots Fired.”
The show features a fictional North Carolina town in a state of turmoil following a racially-charged shooting.
Kimberly Hallas was one of the residents who camped out to watch, hoping to catch a glimpse of Oscar-winning actress Helen Hunt.
"We got to see the practice shoots with Helen Hunt and the big rollers in her hair,” Hallas said.
It's a welcome economic boost for the city that Hallas worried might not happen in the wake of House Bill 2.
"A lot of people have pulled out that were going to do shooting here, so I'm very surprised. I'm happy that they went ahead and stuck with it,” she said.
But this isn't Gaston County's first time in the spotlight.
"The pilot of Sleepy Hollow was filmed here, and part of it was filmed in my apartment building, so that was pretty cool,” Gastonia resident Laurel Morris said.
Add to that list the movies “Talladega Nights” and “Bad Grandpa.”
For longtime residents like Hallas, it’s really no surprise that producers would choose Gastonia as the backdrop.
"It's a great place, it's beautiful, the weather's good. So yeah, I'd like to see a lot more of this."
While they’re in town, residents and business owners certainly aren’t complaining.
"It's brought in tons of business-- in here,” Zoe’s Coffee House manager Dylan Pritchard said. “Tons of people came in wanting coffees and all sorts of stuff, so I think it's a great thing."
Producers of the show have tried to keep the details under wraps, but several crew members tell NBC Charlotte they’ll be filming in and around Gastonia until July.
“Shots Fired” is expected to debut later this year.
Locals hoping for a chance to appear as extras in the show will have a chance on Thursday. For more information on how to apply, click here.