A blog about movies and the Sturbridge area, including The Brookfields, Brimfield, Charlton, Holland, Wales, and Spencer as well as adjacent towns.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Antigonish, the movie to be made in North Adams

I love the poster for the upcoming movie, Antigonish. I can't tell if it's the Swallows returning to Capistrano or the Seagulls returning to Antigonish. Not that it matters, as it evokes the dark aura I believe the filmmakers are aiming at.


Yesterday, upon the stair,
I met a man who wasn’t there
He wasn’t there again today
I wish, I wish he’d go away...

When I came home last night at three
The man was waiting there for me
But when I looked around the hall
I couldn’t see him there at all!
Go away, go away, don’t you come back any more!
Go away, go away, and please don’t slam the door... (slam!)

Last night I saw upon the stair
A little man who wasn’t there
He wasn’t there again today
Oh, how I wish he’d go away

What was Hughes Mearns getting at when he wrote that poem? It was inspired by a ghost haunting a house in the town of Antigonish up in Nova Scotia. Originally part of a play Mearns had written for an English class at Harvard, it is often called The Little Man Who Wasn’t There. Hardly surprising that.

The poem has had an influence in popular culture. The movie starring Billy Bob Thornton took its title from the poem. It was made into song, listen to a Glenn Miller version here.

The words of Antigonish present a conundrum. How can someone be there and not there at the same time. Ah, but such a problem spells opportunity for the artist. The possibilities are endless.

Just where would someone go who could go just about anywhere with the plot? This is the question facing the team of Alexis Rosasco (IMDB) and Christopher Grace (IMDB) who are making the movie, Antigonish. Alexis, a Williamstown native and graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts has written the script. Christopher, director of Boston Film Festival entry, Third Shift: Michael’s Lament, will be at the helm when cameras roll.

Alexis, recently in Kevin McDonald’s Witching Hour, will also play Rachel Ames. Rachel is an eccentric young artist with a bored and disgruntled husband, Gerry. The not so happy couple is having some problems. Gerry has resorted to adultery. Always a sure method to simplify ones life.

Rachel is getting some guidance from James who is described as “a sweet art student and temporary library clerk.” That with the addition of an “intimate working relationship with jock-turned-art model Kyle” should provide some twists and turns that can only become complicated. With this setup, the therapy provided by stern marriage counselor can’t be that exciting.

Can Rachel and Gerry come to terms? Will Rachel find peace from the roaming hubby? Or is the source of her problems deep inside her? Calling Doctor Hitchcock.

Antigonish will not be filmed in the town the poem is named for. Rather, the venue will be the beautiful Berkshires of Western Massachusetts. This is a dark movie, so despite all the lovely locales, the work will be done in the old mill town of North Adams starting in 2011. As a small city, it might bear some resemblance to the Canadian town.

Other cast members include, Kyle Wilker as James, Ellen Soderberg as Sarah, Gina Gesamondo asAndrea, Rich Manley as Kyle.

Academy award winner Loren Miller will direct the editing with Nick Beaubien assisting.

David Palmacci is art director, and William Koroskenyi is in charge of music.

The Antigonish website is here. We’ll be keeping track at the Boston Film Industry Examiner so check back

Again, I must lament not that movies are being made elsewhere, but that they are not being made in Sturbridge Country.

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