Filming of the baseball-themed movie “Undefiled” helped bring jobs and an economic boost to Macon after months of stagnation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
For Bradford Haynes, a former professional baseball player turned actor, writer, and producer, it was the perfect opportunity to put his production company to work in his hometown.
“It’s exciting to see Macon become a hotspot for filming and to witness studios vying for space to shoot,” says Bradford, whose production company,
B12HaynesProductions, co-produced the film “Undefiled.” “Our production rented out five honey wagons (makeup trailers) and were forced to scramble to find more when a bigger production came into town and outbid us. That just illustrates how busy the industry is right now.”
“Undefiled” used a wide range of Macon locations for the film, including the historic Luther Williams Field baseball stadium, City Hall, and Rosa Parks Square. It also used the services of an array of local businesses from restaurants to hotels. The production rented several SUVs from the local Enterprise. During a time when the hotel business has been slow, the production rented 30 rooms for eight days at Courtyard by Marriott Macon.
The production also supported a local restaurant — Fatty’s Pizza — which was forced to closed one of its two locations during the pandemic, ordering more than 80 pizzas, salads, and desserts for the “Undefiled” crew.
In addition to producing the film, Bradford helped write the screenplay and played the lead character. Other actors hired locally were for roles as extras and six of the baseball players used in “Undefiled” were former collegiate players from Macon.
The production crew sourced from the local pool of talent as well. Two Mercer University film students and two Macon residents were hired as production assistants.
Bradford wants to keep producing, writing, and acting. But his big dream for the future is to build studio infrastructure in Macon and bring more film industry opportunities to the town.
“It was such a pleasure having the opportunity to work with Bradford and the Light of Life team as they filmed in Macon,” says Aaron Buzza, Vice President of Development and Chief Operating Officer at Visit Macon. “The impact they had on the community and economy was significant, especially being one of the first two films to shoot here following the shutdown for the pandemic.”