ESPANOLA—Filming, editing and music has now been completed on the movie ‘The Philanthropist,’ filmed in Espanola and Gore Bay earlier this summer. The film will be officially launched this weekend.
“We completed work on the film a few days ago,” said Jayson Stewart, writer and director of the film. “‘The Philanthropist’ will be launched at the Northern Frights Festival in Sudbury on October 20.
“I’m very happy; everything worked out quite well,” said Mr. Stewart. “We are now putting the film out on the festival circuit. After that it will be available to everyone, probably online at judgementfilms.com.”
“We are hoping to do a special showing in Gore Bay and Espanola at some point in the near future,” said Mr. Stewart.
As was reported this past May, the majority of the filming of ‘The Philanthropist’ was completed in Espanola with some filming taking place in Gore Bay.
“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 role of the philanthropist in the film. He spoke with The Recorder after the filming in Gore Bay last May. “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.”
Mr. Stewart explained he had been looking for a place for a while to shoot the film when he heard about the location 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.”
“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, et cetera. This was the perfect house to shoot some of the film,” said Mr. Stewart.
Mr. Madill told The Recorder the house has a lot of character, having been built by the Purvis family in 1901.
Mr. Stewart is inspired by such cinematic aesthetics as David Lynch’s ‘Twin Peaks,’ The ‘X-Files’ and Stephen King’s short stories. “I have always been attracted to surreal stories that peel back the pretty façade 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 Baratynski (Espanola) and Dylon Whyte (Gore Bay) and focuses on the stories of three women as they plead their cases to the philanthropist (Mr. Whyte). “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.”
The film festival being held in Sudbury “brings together short horror films from around the world, from such places as Los Angeles and the U.K,” said Mr. Stewart. “Most films are anywhere from six to 13 minutes in length. Our film is just under 15 minutes in length.”