Hillbilly Elegy

Courtesy HarperCollins

Hillbilly Elegy stars Glenn Close and Amy Adams and others from the  Netflix movie visited Middletown Saturday and lunched at Ami Vitori's Gracie's restaurant downtown, according to the Journal-News.

Director Ron Howard also was seen in town scouting homes on Harrison Street for the film version of J.D. Vance's memoir of growing up among working-class "hillbillies" in the Butler County steel town. However, most of the film will be shot in Georgia, starting later this month.

middletown ohio
Al Behrman / AP

Yes, it's true: All the visits to Middletown by Oscar-winning director Ron Howard were to scope out locations for his Hillbilly Elegy movie based on J.D. Vance's memoir of growing up among working-class "hillbillies" in the Butler County steel town.

But only a fraction of the film will be shot in Ohio, unless things change, says Ami Vitori, a Middletown City Council member and a Middletown Visitors Bureau board member.

Courtesy Internet Movie Database

Actor Gabriel Basso (The Whole Truth) will star in Hillbilly Elegy as "J.D. Wade," the fictionalized name for J.D. Vance, who wrote the book of the same title about growing up in Middletown, Deadline reports.

Hillbilly Elegy "is a potential star making role for the young actor," Deadline says.

amy adams
Chris Pizzello / Invision/AP

Update 9 p.m. Thursday April 11: Glenn Close will follow up her Oscar-nominated performance in The Wife by playing J.D. Vance's grandmother in Hillbilly Elegy.

Courtesy Heather Gibson

Oscar-winning director Ron Howard visited Middletown Tuesday while preparing to make a film  adaptation of Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis, the best-selling book by Middletown native J.D. Vance.