The city of Lenox will become the backdrop for the filming of a movie remake this spring. Lenox Chamber of Commerce coordinator, Michelle Tullberg, says the town is more than thrilled to be the scene for a portion of the film. "It’s based off of the original movie ‘The Crazies’ directed by George Romero," says Tullberg. "They were looking for the right look, obviously, for their movie, and so they cast us."
The Overture Films production will once again feature the 1973 version’s director George Romero, this time as the remake’s executive director. This movie will still keep the name "The Crazies." Tullberg says Breck Eisner, who directed the film "Sahara" will also direct this movie. Two well-known stars will be in town as well.
"The star of the movie is Timothy Olyphant, and he is known for ‘Deadwood’ series on HBO. He was in one of the ‘Die Hard’ movies," Tullberg says. "The female lead is Radha Mitchell, and she has done some great work as well. She was in Woody Allen’s film ‘Miranda and Miranda’ and ‘Silent Hill’ and ‘Rogue’ as well as ‘Finding Neverland’." Overture’s website describes the film as one about the inhabitants of a small Kansas town who are suddenly plagued by insanity and then death when their water becomes contaminated.
Tullberg says most of the movie is being filmed in Georgia, but the cast and crew will be in Lenox sometime in April or May to record a portion of the movie. Tax breaks offered to filmmakers who come to Iowa, combined with the downtown architecture, made the community a perfect match for the film.
"We got the opportunity because we had the right look and also because Iowa offers excellent tax credits," says Tullberg. According to Tullberg, the movie will utilize a lot of local individuals in the background as minor cast members, and they plan to purchase from local companies as much as possible.
"My understanding from everybody that I have worked with, they are very excited to be in the area. They’ve been wonderful to work with on my end," Tullberg says. "They’re excited to be here, and we’re probably even more excited to have them here." She says besides the downtown area, the Lenox school will get its fifteen minutes of fame in the film.
The crew will also set up stage at the baseball field, as well as in a farmhouse near town. Overture Films is well known for recent movies "Last Chance Harvey" starring Dustin Hoffman, as well as "Righteous Kill" starring Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino. For more information,visit the Overture Film website . The remake of "The Crazies" is scheduled for release on September 29th.