“Dennis Hopper spent several years in Wilmington after filming ‘Blue Velvet’ (1986). He was largely responsible for the restoration of the Masonic Temple building at 17-21 N. Front St., Wilmington — now home to the City Stage theater — and he directed the 1994 feature ‘Chasers’ here…. Hopper hasn’t visited in a few years, but he reportedly still owns real estate in New Hanover County.”
– From StarNewsOnline.com, Aug. 14, 2009
” ‘It was a nightmare, very honestly, that movie ["Super Mario Bros" 1993]…. I was supposed to go down there [to Wilmington] for five weeks, and I was there for 17. It was so over budget. But I bought a couple buildings down there… and I started painting. I made an art studio out of one.’ ”
– From an interview with Dennis Hopper, avclub.com, Dec. 2, 2008
“This isn’t the sleepiest burg in the world…. But walking the streets on a steamy day, you wonder what a guy like Dennis Hopper could find here to keep himself interested.
“Still, here he is, climbing out the window of his newly renovated downtown loft apartment and onto the roof of a five-story, 61,000-square-foot behemoth he owns that was once a Masonic temple….
“He looked out over the Cape Fear River, on which the U.S.S. North Carolina… interrupts the panorama as inelegantly as a gorilla in the living room.
” ‘I agree it’s a little weird, but I like it here,’ he said.”
– From The New York Times, Sept. 8, 1994
Hopper died today in Los Angeles. He was 74.