The ‘Lights’ come up; locally made film shown later in May
Posted By TARA HAGAN
A group of local 20-somethings are finally ready to unveil their first feature film.
“Ugly Lights,” will premiere at the Imperial Theatre May 20.
Shot entirely in Sarnia over three days, the film was written, produced and directed by local talent.
It all started last November, when writers Mark Tetreault, Michael Higgins and Daryl Silvestri teamed up with Nathan Colquhoun, who took over the technical side of things.
They started “Monkey Do Productions” and have been working non-stop on the film ever since.
“I think it’s pretty amazing how well people can work together,” said Colquhoun, who just finished the final editing process on the film.
The script for “Ugly Lights” was written in a couple of weeks, including three rewrites. It tells the story of a group of recent high school grads gathering at the end of summer at a local watering hole, each making critical decisions about their future.
“Ugly Lights” refers to the lights switched on at the end of the night as the bar clears out.
“It’s a good story and it tells a lot about that age group,” said Colquhoun. “There’s no real theme or moral here; sometimes just telling the story can say more than trying to get a message across.” The group started production in January, after renting two cameras and issuing a casting call. About 60 people showed up to audition and virtually everyone was given a part, either playing one of the eight lead roles or filling in as extras.
The owners of the Trinity Lounge on Christina Street allowed the group to use their bar for three days of filming, free of charge.
Paying entirely from their own pockets, the group produced the film on a budget of about $6,000.
“We really believed in the film,” said Colquhoun. “It was a lot of fun, and it was a small price to pay for the amount of experience we got.”
Once filming wrapped up, Colquhoun built a computer specifically for the many hours of digital editing ahead and took on the task with the help of friends Tyler Kilp and Danny Alexander.
“We basically took 24-hours of footage and cut it down to 52 minutes,” said Colquhoun, who also took on the task of DVD-making.
The DVD-version of the film, which includes commentary and blooper reels, will be available for purchase at the film’s premiere.
It also comes with a copy of the film’s soundtrack, which includes songs by local artists.
And after all their hard work is paid off with the release of the film, Colquhoun said the local moviemakers will be back to work soon.
“I definitely want to make another movie,” he said. “The fact that we put out a 50-minute film in six months is amazing.”
“Ugly Lights” will premiere at the Imperial Theatre on May 20 at 7:30 p.m. with shows to follow on May 22 and 23. Tickets are $10. DVD copies of the film will also be available for purchase for $15. For more information, visit www.uglylightsmovie.com