Monday, August 8, 2011

Cincinnati and the Summer of Movie Magic

What an incredible summer we are having here in Cincinnati, Ohio. No, I’m not talking about the recent record we tied here with 17 straight days with temperature over 90 degrees. But what’s really hot this summer are the four movies currently in production throughout the city starring major actors.

We haven’t seen anything like this in years. I’m sure the recently passed tax credit from the State of Ohio is a contributing factor for our newfound success. The truth is filmmaking is now taking place all over the country. Thanks to more people getting into low-budget filmmaking and the accessibility of new technology in digital filmmaking, Hollywood has become accessible to practically everyone.

Here’s a rundown on what’s happening this summer. JC Schroder has just wrapped up his thriller, Forever’s End. The story is about a young woman who’s on the verge of insanity years after a post apocalyptic event that apparently kills everyone on earth. Several scenes were shot in downtown Newport, KY, Corinth, KY and Eaton, OH. Schroder has returned to Los Angeles to start the postproduction phase of the project. Locally-based Rivercoast films in Montgomery, OH is onboard to handle distribution.

Billed as a thriller, Seven Below stars Val Kilmer (Tombstone and Heat), Ving Rhames (Mission Impossible and Pulp Fiction), and Luke Gross (Hell Boy II) is set to shoot later this month in Goshen Township. Producer Eric Fischer, a 1998 Moeller High School graduate (Cincinnati, Ohio), received a $335,000 film tax credit from the Ohio Film Office. The film is about a group of bus riders who find themselves stranded near a remote farm where a murder occurred over 100 years ago.

Measure, a crime thriller, is set to complete principle photography on August 11 in Norwood. The film stars Scott L. Schwartz (Ocean's 11 and sequels) as an aging Irish mob boss trying to keep control of his city. The film is directed by L. A based Director, DJay Brawner.

The final film is the highly anticipated A Strange Brand of Happy. After two years of development and delays, the project will start shooting on August 15. The producers recently announced the addition of the Academy Award winning actress Shirley Jones to the cast. Jones joins an already strong cast which includes Grammy Award winner Rebecca St. James (Left Behind), Venida Evans (The Adjustment Bureau), Joe Boyd (Hitting the Nuts) and 1996 Loveland high school graduate Ashley Palmer (Paranormal Activity). Appearing in a supporting role is Media Missionary School’s host, Bekka Pruitt, who recently moved to Los Angeles to pursue her acting career.

A Strange of Brand of Happy is a romantic comedy told from a faith-based perspective. The producers are hoping to engage a mainstream audience while at the same time holding true to their values.

If you are interested in being an extra, there are plenty opportunities available. A Strange Brand of Happy has a site where you can sign up. You can find it at

Hopefully, the summer is only the beginning as many other projects are currently being discussed for the Queen City. Later this year, the action adventure, big-budget film the Avengers is also set to shoot in our area.

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