GORE BAY—It was a case of “lights, camera, action,” as the filming of the short film ‘The Philanthropist’ took place in Gore Bay and Espanola this weekend.
“We had a heck of a time, as good as a day as you can have, I had a ball,” stated Dylon Whyte, a Gore Bay actor who played the title role of the philanthropist in the film. “It was a really long day but it was a successful shoot and everything got done.”
“We were exhausted but blitzing by the time filming was done,” said Mr. Whyte. “The main thing is it was a success and we got everything in the can.”
“I had been looking for a place for awhile to shoot the film and this came about,” said Jayson Stewart, writer/director of the Indie film, this past Saturday during shooting in Gore Bay. He explained, “the story for this film had come as a dream in my head and I knew I needed to do this film. I had been telling a colleague at work (Espanola High School) Marti, who told me about Gore Bay and the house that Glyn (Madill) owns and how it would tie in with the film so well.”
Filming of ‘The Philanthropist’ took place in Gore Bay on Saturday and in Espanola on Sunday.
Mr. Stewart explained, “I needed an indoor Victorian style smoking room for one of the main scenes and I had posted this request on many Facebook pages and my options included Sudbury funeral homes etc. This was the perfect house to shoot some of the film,” said Mr. Stewart.
Mr. Madill told the Recorder, “I work as a guidance counselor at Espanola High School. One of Jayson and my colleagues had been here before and told Jayson to go check it out. The house has a lot of character,” he said, noting it had been built by the Purvis family in 1901.
Inspired by such cinematic aesthetics as David Lynch’s ‘Twin Peaks,’ ‘The X-Files,’ and Stephen King’s short stories, ‘The Philanthropist,’ will be sent to film festivals around the world once editing is complete. He had explained previously, “I have always been attracted to surreal stories that peel back the pretty facade of reality and poke what’s there. Sometimes what you find is horrible and sometimes you find beauty and truth.”
The principal cast consists of four main actors: Heather Stevenson (Sudbury), Liliane Chretien (Sudbury), Autumn Buratynski (Espanola) and Dylon Whyte (Gore Bay). The three-way storyline focuses on three women as they plead their cases to a philanthropist (Mr. Whyte) and pose the question “will they walk away with their fortunes or never leave his office at all?”
Mr. Whyte told the Recorder he thought the film would be fun to act in, so he sent in a self tape of himself reading one of the lines out of the script to Mr. Stewart and got cast for the title role.
“The film is based on an actual dream that I had and I wrote a full narrative and story of the dream the day after I had the dream,” said Mr. Stewart. He said it is a horror film more in the vein of Stephen King without the blood and guts. “It is a version of reality peeled back.”
“We were filming for 17 hours on Saturday in Gore Bay,” said Mr. Stewart. “We were taking our time, and everyone was learning jobs as we went along. Next day we shot for two hours at a location near the OK Tire store in Espanola.”
“I am very pleased how things went, the cast and crew worked very well together,” said Mr. Stewart. “People had to switch jobs as things went along to help out. It was a fantastic experience.”
He said that once editing is finished, and a composer scores the film, “everything should be done and wrapped up by the end of June, for the film festival circuit,” added Mr. Stewart.