Last year, a713production shot a short film about the struggles children growing up in the world today, and how finding inner strength in the midst of difficult times can help them find a brighter future. The symbol of this inner strength, a dog named “Trouble,” was conceived of by Kendra and Sheila Duncan, and has taken on a life of it’s own by helping children around the country and the globe to believe in themselves and have faith in a better tomorrow. The project of “Trouble” the dog was put together by Mark and Bethany Constance of a713production, and shot in Portsmouth, New Hampshire early in 2011.
Now, “Trouble” is set to come back to Portsmouth for a showing at the Portsmouth Public Library on May 6th. The program will include a selection of dynamic speakers and screening, as well as a reception.
“Our film, “Trouble,” is — unfortunately — a very timely piece. Every day more children become victims of bullying, abuse, homelessness, and illness. Our film illustrates these statistics in a dramatic, informative way. This generation of children is more stressed than any before them. Our goal is to shed light on what’s happening to kids in our own communities… and to utilize the character of Trouble The Dog as a coping mechanism for these innocent victims and open the lines of communication to help them. Kids “get” the concept of hope and resilience behind Trouble,” says Sheila Duncan.
She goes further to say, “I’ve seen a recent change in the testimonials I receive about Trouble; often a parent or guardian will tell me that their child has asked that their very favorite “buddy” Trouble, be given to another child who needs him more. And that, to me, is a very powerful message that Trouble needs to be universal.”
To find out more about Trouble, visit the website here, or like his Facebook page. You can also RSVP to the screening in Portsmouth, here. The event runs from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Portsmouth Public Library on May 6th. Both adults and children are invited to attend this meaningful event.
And so, another year has passed in Hollywood East, and with it, a ton of projects, developments, and other news items that captured our interest throughout 2011. Let’s take a look back at what made headlines in Hollywood East over the past year.
A bevy of big budget productions pranced their way through the Bay State, bringing with it a steady stream of big name stars. I Don’t Know How She Does It brought Sarah Jessica Parker, Christina Hendricks, and “Cheers” alum, Kelsey Grammar. Ted brought Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, and Seth MacFarlane. Here Comes the Boom brought Kevin James, Salma Hayek, and Henry Winkler. I Hate You Dad brought Adam Sandler, Adam Samberg, and Leighton Meester. And finally, R.I.P.D. brought Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Bacon, and Kurt Russell.
We were excited to see all the films that debuted this year that filmed in Boston in whole or in part in the past year or two. Films like The Zookeeper, Moneyball, I Don’t Know How She Does It, and What’s Your Number showed movie-goers across the country why the Bay State makes such a beautiful backdrop for major motion pictures.
There were also updates on the state of the MA film tax credits, with some changes taking place. The Office of Travel and Tourism took over the responsibilities previously looked after by the Massachusetts Film Office, with Lisa Strout taking over for Nick Paleologos.
In more disappointing news, it seems the Plymouth Rock Studios project has been put on permanent hold.
Culled from our own backyard, we spoke to local stars of film, TV, and music. Brighton-based band Gentlemen Hall made us lend an ear and a cheer as we watched these talented youngsters make their live national television debut on the Billboard Music Awards.
We were lucky enough to get invited to a sneak peak of the Footloose remake, and got to talk to home-grown star, Kenny Wormald on how he brought a little bit of Boston to the new version of this 80s cult classic.
Reality TV continues to make headlines year after year. In 2011, we watched with excitement the adventures the infamous “Deathwish Movers” went through each week, and cheered on local stars on “Top Chef: Desserts”, “Chopped”, and the “Expedition Impossible” who did New England proud. The genre even inspired the hilarious web-series, “Real Housewives of South Boston”, which we sincerely hope to see more of in 2012!
The culinary world even captured our attention, with it’s Hollywood East Connections. Our favorite homeboy, Mark Wahlberg, surprised us all by venturing into the culinary world, opening the aptly named Wahlburgers in Hingham. “Hell’s Kitchen” star, Jason Santos, opened Blue Inc., and “Top Chef; All Stars” contestant, Tiffany Faison, opened the ever so cutely named BBQ spot, Sweet Cheeks.
These are just a few of the fabulous and fascinating stories that kept us connected in Hollywood East this year. Here’s hoping 2012 brings with it more excitement in TV, movies, and music across the New England states!
It’s no secret that Hollywood is youth obsessed. While Hollywood East is a long way from LALA Land, we aren’t necessarily immune to the trend. At seven years old, Nate Krawshuk is already well on his way to becoming a seasoned actor. Currently starring in a locally produced indie-flick entitled Girlfriend, starring Amanda Plummer (Pulp Fiction), Jackson Rathbone (Twilight), Shannon Woodward (“Boston Public”), and Evan Sneider. The film was shot in Wayland, MA in the fall of 2009. The writer and director, Justin Lerner, grew up in Wayland. In addition to its more well-known actors the film also marks the debut of Evan Sneider, who is the first actor with Down Syndrome to have the lead role in a North American film. His performance has received phenomenal reviews. The movie is doing the festival circuit and getting good reviews. Earlier this month, the film closed the Woods Hole Film Festival in Cape Cod.
We got to talk to Nate and his mother, Kim Krawshuk, about the journey into becoming a young actor, what it means for their family life, and his plans for the future.
HEC: How did you help Nate prepare for being in the movie?
Kim: Being that this was our first real acting experience, we really didn’t know what to expect. I basically gave him pep talks on being polite, following directions etc. I reminded him that it was an honor to be chosen to play this role, and to do his very best. He was only 5 at the time, but I think he “got it.”
HEC: What is the hardest thing about having a child that works in entertainment?
Kim: By far the biggest challenge for me is the “last minute” aspect of the business, and the resulting juggling of our schedule to accommodate auditions, callbacks and filming sessions. I have another child, and it is a challenge to meet all of her needs when we are called away for a next day audition. I also have volunteer obligations I don’t like to cancel if possible. I am lucky to have a very supportive family and group of friends that help out in these situations.
HEC: What has been the most rewarding experience you have shared as a parent and child throughout the process of becoming involved in acting?
Kim: A momentous experience was seeing Nate called down to take part in the Q&A session after the screening of Girlfriend at the Woods Hole Film Festival. After two years of waiting to see the film on the big screen, it was finally here. He smiled through the whole film, then ran down for the Q&A, even leaving one of his shoes back at his seat. I don’t think he was even aware that he had one bare foot. He grabbed the microphone to answer the questions, but was very honest when he admitted to not remembering much about the filming….”because I was only 5 at the time”. He seemed so proud, and we, in turn, were so proud of him.
It is so rewarding to see Nate share his “personality” with his audience. Ever since he was a baby, he has liked being the center of attention. He struggled to talk as a toddler, but still managed to find ways to “perform” and people have always been drawn to that. He never knew his grandfather (my father, who died in 1998), but they are very much alike. It is so rewarding to see Nate having success at such a young age with something that seems to be a real passion.
HEC: When did you first become interested in being an actor?
Nate: I took a class after school called “Showstoppers” where I got to sing karaoke and put on plays. I really liked talking into the microphone, and I liked being in the plays too.
HEC: How did you get the role in Girlfriend?
Nate: My friend’s mom told my mom that I should go to the audition at the high school. I went and met Justin (the writer/director) and Evan (the lead actor). They were both really really nice, and I think they liked me too.
HEC: What was the most surprising thing you learned about working on a movie set?
Nate: That you have to do lots and lots of “takes” to get one scene done.
HEC: What was your most memorable experience working on the film?
Nate: There was one scene where I got to eat lots of licorice and watch a movie….that was awesome! I didn’t like it when I had to do the scene where I lay in cold mud on my back!
HEC: Would you like to work on more movies in the future?
Nate: I would like to do more movies. I’d really like to do action movies!
To find out more on Girlfriend, and Nate’s involvement in it, check out their website.
While Twilight fans anxiously count down the days till the next installment of the series, New Moon, hits the silver screen, those ‘in the know’ in the greater Boston area recently had a chance to view one of the sexy stars up-close and personal. Jackson Rathbone, alias “Jasper Hale”, from the popular vampire movies, just wrapped filming in Wayland on an independent film entitled Girlfriend. The Justin Lerner directed film recently finished several weeks of shooting in Wayland, Natick, and other areas on the Boston outskirts.
The film, which is set to be released in 2010, costars Shannon Woodward, whose resume includes appearances on the Boston-set TV shows “Boston Public” and “Crossing Jordan”. The indie flick follows the story of Rathbone’s character, a small-town mechanic, who finds himself in a relationship with Woodward’s character, a single mother. The relationship takes a dramatic turn when it is complicated by the involvement of a young man with Down’s syndrome, played by Evan Sneider.
With production only recently wrapping, Rathbone will be returning to the Eclipse set in Vancouver, in order to finish filming for what also will be a 2010 release. The third installment of the Twilight saga is currently filming in Canada.
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