The brilliant blue of Florida Keys waters sealed the deal for the new Netflix drama series.
Producers of the 13-episode series to star Kyle Chandler and Sissy Spacek “love the Keys,” location manager Maria Chavez said Wednesday.
The still-unnamed series always was set in the Keys, Chavez told Monroe County commissioners at their meeting at the Marathon Government Center, but other Florida coastal areas and even Savannah, Ga., were considered as areas that might be depicted as the Keys.
“When they had to make the final decision, it was the color of the water,” Chavez said. “You can’t find that anywhere else.”
Filming on the first episode of the series begins this week in Islamorada and North Key Largo, and will run until September or October. The premiere is scheduled for February.
Location shooting could resemble a “circus” with 26 trucks to service a cast and crew of 125 people, said Allison Chavez from Sony Picture Television, producer of the show.
“We are a big production,” she said. “But when we finish filming at end of the night, it’s like we were never there.”
The series centers on four generations of a Keys family that harbors a burdensome secret.
Chandler (“Friday Night Lights”) stars as a Monroe County Sheriff’s Office deputy, with Spacek as the family’s matriarch.
Chavez briefed the commission on the series since Sony Pictures Television production seeks use of some county-owned sites and needs permits for some filming. A boat will blow up and “simulated gunfire” may be heard, she said.
“We are very aware of the environmental sensitivity of filming in the Keys,” said Chavez, who has worked on numerous South Florida movies and series. “We really want to create good, positive relationships.”
A second season already is being considered, Chavez said.
“The writers want to capture what’s here, she said. “Not just what tourists see on U.S. 1 but other hidden areas of Keys.”
Primary location sites for early filming will include the Moorings Village Resort and Coral Bay Marina in Islamorada, and Alabama Jack’s on Card Sound Road.
Chaves said each episode will film in about nine days at a cost of $8 million per episode.
“That’s a revenue stream coming into Monroe County hotels, restaurants and rentals,” she said. “And the tourism value is going to be unbelievable.”
Photo credit: The Overseas Highway crosses the Florida Keys. Andy Newman / Florida Keys News Bureau/MCT