My Town Pictures will begin sneak preview screenings of its highly-anticipated film "A Place for Heroes" on Friday, May 10, in Traer, with showings set for 6 and 8:30 p.m. at the Traer Theatre. A pre-Red Carpet reception will be held at the Traer Memorial Building at 4 p.m. where persons will have an opportunity to have their picture taken with celebrities and receive autographs. Red Carpet arrivals will begin at 5:30 p.m. Tickets for the showings are $5 in advance and $6 at the door, and are available at Farmers Savings Bank, Reuman's Clothing or Cecilia Podhajsky at 478-2947.
The movie, filmed entirely in Tama County, was produced in August and September and stars some legendary Hollywood actors as well as outstanding Iowa-based actors. The cast includes: Paul Sorvino, Oscar nominee Sally Kellerman, Norman Lloyd, Daniel Roebuck, Ellan Dolan, Ben Easter, Robert Pralgo, Bill Sorvino, Kiera Morrill, Rachel Storey, Kim Grimaldi, Jay Villwock, Justin Marxen and many others, as well as many local extras.
"A Place for Heroes" is the story of a WWII veteran named Robert, whose death at the beginning of the film leads to the discovery that not only was he a veteran, but he had been wanted for muder in 1943. Not understading how this could be, his daughter and granddaughter go to his hometown to learn the truth and discover just how heroic Robert really was.
The film's high respect for veterans included cameos from many veterans in the Tama County area, including Traer, Clutier and Meskwaki veterans as well as veterans from other parts of the state. Regional hero Taylor Morris made a cameo as well.
The production team was almost entirely Iowa-based as well, led by lighting director Jon Van Allen of Cedar Falls. Writer and director Scott Thompson had produced a variety of small films in the region and started the unique concept of "community-made" films, including two made in Tama County ("The Call" and "Hometown"). He has since created a hybrid of the community movie model with fully professional filmmaking and bringing in national talent to add to an outstanding Iowa cast that has created much interest. The My Town Pictures team just completed a second feature, "After Life," in Winnebago County, following the Tama County model.
The film was funded completely with Iowa investors, most of which came from Tama County, including Traer, Clutier and a generous investment from the Meskwaki Indian Nation, whose respect for their own and other military veterans is strong.
A sneak preview limited special edition DVD version of the film will be available at the time of the sneak preview screenings. A portion of each DVD sale will go to veterans organizations within the community where the sneak preview is being held. These sneak preview DVDs are not available in stores or online and are not for resale anywhere. A limited number of these are available and they will also include short features on the Korean War anniversary of 2012, hosted by Sid Morris, and a review of the Meskwaki Nation's long history of military service.
The sneak preview screenings will continue through May and June in Iowa. The sneak preview DVD will be available only while supplies last. Once they're gone, the official DVD of the film may not be available for as much as a year while the producers negotiatie with distribution companies who will market the film around the world. Pre-orders can be made by contacting Cecilia Podhajsky at 319-478-2947.