Touchback

Laff’s guide to Waterfront Film Festival 2014

June 12th, 2014 at 2:19 am by under Entertainment
Waterfront Film Festival 2014 poster

Waterfront Film Festival 2014 poster by Ron English

The 16th annual Waterfront Film Festival is almost here

The Lakeshore tradition is back in South Haven for its second year!  After moving from Saugatuck the year before, the 4-day festival of film, food, music, and fun hopes for better weather (free of power outages) and attendance numbers around 16,000.   More than 70 films will be shown at the non-competitive film festival with 21 movies making Midwest premieres and 13 playing in Michigan for the first time.  The slate of movies is a mix of comedic, dramatic, and thriller feature films, thought provoking documentaries, and dozens of short films.  At many of the screenings, cast members, directors, producers, and/or writers may be present to discuss their movie and film making with the audience.

Opening night
Those thousands of people can start Thursday night with the opening night party at South Beach, gates open at 6:00pm featuring music from Tony Ferrari, Bradley Wisk, Valentiger, and Alexis.  Then at dusk, on a 50-foot inflatable screen you can watch the “Shorts Spectacular”, a screening of 6 short films.

Friday, Saturday, Sunday 
Friday morning at 9:00am the screenings begin at three locations around townSouth Haven High School (600 Elkenberg Street – 2 venues inside), Michigan Theater (210 Center Street – 3 venues inside), and Foundry Hall (422 Eagle Street) and the last movies start at 11:00pm.  There is a short film that plays in front of most movies, usually 5-10 minutes long.  The schedule is similar on Saturday and Sunday. If you don’t want to just see movies all day, you can also do some sightseeing, shopping, or eat at one of the many restaurants or eateries around the area.  Almost everything is in walking distance.  But there is also a free shuttle service if you prefer to park in one spot and then branch out to the other venues.

Celebrities
Get your tickets early for the Networking Event held Saturday at 2:15pm at South Haven City Hall (539 Phoenix Street).  You can meet, ask questions and get advice from celebrities and industry insiders; actors, directors, writers and producers.  Many of the names listed below will be taking part in this event.

Many well known movie, TV, and entertainment industry stars will be attending this year’s WFF, keep your eye out for:

Jason Ritter

Jason Ritter

Jason Ritter returns to Waterfront for the second time with his new movie “Wild Canaries”.  He was also here in 2009 for his movie “Peter and Vandy”.  2014 will mark the fourth time that one of his movies have screened here: also “A Bag of Hammers” (2011) and “Free Samples” (2012).  The Primetime Emmy Award nominee TV and film actor has nearly 80 credits, including in films “Freddie v. Jason”, “W.” “The East” and NBC’s hit “Parenthood”.

Melanie Lynskey Melanie Lynskey 

Melanie Lynskey returns to West Michigan with her new movie “Chu and Blossom”.

She filmed the movie “Touchback” in the Grand Rapids area in 2010.  She is an award-winning actor with more than 55 credits during the last 20 years, including “Up in the Air” with George Clooney, as Rose opposite Charlie Sheen on TV’s hit “Two and a Half Men”, with Drew Barrymore in “Ever After”, and with Kate Winslet in their explosive film debut “Heavenly Creatures” directed by Peter Jackson.

Eddie Jemison Eddie Jemison

Eddie Jemison is at Waterfront Film Festival with his new movie “Coffee, Kill Boss” as well as “King of Herrings”, for which he was the writer, director and lead actor.

He’s an actor with more than 60 credits who has worked with some of the biggest names in Hollywood. He is widely known for his role as Livingston Dell in the “Ocean’s Eleven” series opposite Brad Pitt and George Clooney, as well as roles in “Bruce Almighty” opposite Jim Carrey and “The Informant” opposite Matt Damon.

Blake Robbins  Blake Robbins

Blake Robbins is attending WFF with the film “Sublime and the Beautiful”, which he directed and stars in.

He is an actor with more than 55 credits and best known for playing Tom Halpert on the NBC hit “The Office”, as well as for his role as C.O. Dave Brass on the critically acclaimed HBO series “Oz”. He also appeared in the film “The Ugly Truth” opposite Gerard Butler.  Additionally, Blake co-authored the book “Acting Qs: Conversations with Working Actors”.

David Lascher David Lascher 

David Lascher is attending Waterfront Film Festival as the director of “Sister”.

He is an actor with more than 30 credits, including the film “White Squall” and series regular roles in “Sabrina the Teenage Witch”, “Hey Dude” and “Blossom” among others.

Christine Elise Christine Elise McCarthy

Christine Elise McCarthy has been involved with Waterfront Film Festival for years as the the festival’s programmer.

She is a well known actor, director and writer with more than 60 credits, including her recent film “Bathing & the Single Girl”, which has been expanded and adapted into a full-length memoir, as well as for main roles in “Child’s Play 2”, and on TV hits “Beverly Hills 90210” and “ER”.

Bradley Wisk Bradley Wisk

Bradley Wisk is a professional opera singer who was a contestant on “America’s Got Talent” and is a current contestant on “The Bachelorette”.

He is performing at the opening night concert.

The movies - Features
“Aboard the Carousel” (Midwest Premiere)
“Arlo and Julie” (Michigan Premiere) - Official Selection, SXSW Film Festival
“Being Awesome” (Midwest Premiere)
“BFFs” (Michigan Premiere)
“Boy Meets Girl” (Midwest Premiere)
“Cas & Dylan” (Midwest Premiere)
“Chu and Blossom” (Midwest Premiere)
“Coffee, Kill Boss” (Midwest Premiere)
“Copenhagen” (Michigan Premiere) - Audience Award, Best Narrative Feature, Slamdance Film Festival
“Craters of the Moon” (Midwest Premiere)
“Empire of Dirt”  (Midwest Premiere) - Special Jury Prize, Toronto International Film Festival
“Father-Like Son” (Midwest Premiere)
“Finding Neighbors”  (Michigan Premiere)
“I Put A Hit On You”  (Michigan Premiere)
“Jake Squared” (Michigan Premiere)
“King of Herrings” (Midwest Premiere)
“Knuckle Jack” (Midwest Premiere)
“Lawrence & Holloman” (Midwest Premiere)
“The Odd Way Home” (Michigan Premiere)
“Rezeta” (Midwest Premiere) - Grand Jury Prize, Best Narrative Feature, Slamdance Film Festival
“Sister” (Midwest Premiere) - Official selection, Tribeca Film Festival
“The Sublime and Beautiful” (Midwest Premiere) - Best Narrative Feature nominee, Slamdance Film Festival
“Wild Canaries” (Midwest Premiere)

The movies – Documentaries
Several documentaries that played at previous WFFs have gone on to receive Oscar nominations and even a win.  There are 11 feature length documentaries this year:
“Brave Miss World” (Michigan Premiere)
“Bronx Obama” (Midwest Premiere)
“Fight Church” (Michigan Premiere)
“Kidnapped For Christ” (Michigan Premiere)
“Little Hope Was Arson” – Best Documentary Feature nominee, 2014 Slamdance Film Festival
“Love Child”  (Midwest Premiere) - Grand Jury Prize Nominee, World Cinema Documentary, Sundance Film Festival
“No Cameras Allowed” (Midwest Premiere)
“Small Small Thing” (Michigan Premiere)
“This May Be the Last Time” (Midwest Premiere) – Official selection, Sundance Film Festival
“Whitey: United States of America v. James J. Bulger” (Midwest Premiere) - Official selection, Sundance Film Festival
“Who Took Johnny” (Michigan Premiere)

More information:  (more…)


“Touchback” at the box office

April 24th, 2012 at 12:52 pm by under Entertainment
“Touchback” does well at West Michigan theaters in opening weekend

"Touchback" poster courtesy Anchor Bay Films

     “Touchback” was 8th highest attended movie showing at Celebration! Cinemas during the weekend, eventhough it was only showing at 3 of the theater chain’s theaters.  The family drama was also playing at AMC Star Grand Rapids, but no information on ticket sales is available from the AMC chain.

     Celebration! says 2500 tickets were sold Friday, Saturday, Sunday at Celebration! North, South, and Rivertown.   “Touchback” was #5 at North, “Touchback” was #8 at Rivertown, and #6 at South.

      “Touchback”‘s per screen average in West Michigan was 7 times higher than it was nationally where it was playing on about 70 screens.

     Nationally, “Touchback” was 45th, making $64,000 this weekend in 69 theaters.  That’s down 4.5% from its first weekend in release, although it was playing in 19 more theaters than last week.  So far, the movie has made a total of $149,100 in 2 weeks of limited release.

“Touchback” filmed for several weeks during the summer of 2010, mostly in Coopersville, but also in Grand Rapids, Detroit, and Ohio in Coshocton, Columbus, and Warsaw.

The cast includes Kurt Russell as the head coach, Brian Presley in the lead role, Melanie Lynskey as his wife, Mark Blucas as a friend and teammate, Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Christine Lahti as the mother, Drew Powell, James Duvall, and Austin Ross as teammates, Sarah Wright as cheerleader and girlfriend “Jenny”, plus Sianoa Smit-McPhee,  and Kevin Covais.

(National box office info from Box Office Mojo.com)

Previous posts about “Touchback”:
4/20/12 – VIDEO: At the premiere of “Touchback”: http://youtu.be/A1BS98UGx9U
4/20/12 – My non-spoiler review of “Touchback”
4/20/12 – VIDEO: My review of “Touchback” and more on EightWest: http://youtu.be/aroJ4P3cpcU
4/20/12 – VIDEO: Preview of “Touchback”, focusing on the making of the movie: http://youtu.be/wmmB5E4NCz8
4/20/12 – VIDEO: Preview of ”Touchback” focusing on what the movie is about: http://youtu.be/mbPeJoXvz7k
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Review: “Touchback” is an inspiring drama that will make you smile

April 20th, 2012 at 12:01 am by under Entertainment

“Touchback” is an inspiring, thought provoking drama, that will bring a smile to your face.

This is a movie that is packed with themes of small town – small town setting, small town values, small town story – not too big in scope… or budget.

In a blender, mix: “Its A Wonderful Life”, “Back to the Future”, “Mr. Destiny”, “Field of Dreams”, “Miracle”, and “Hoosiers”…  take away the bigger budgets (*see below) of most of those movies and you get “Touchback”.

"Touchback" poster courtesy Anchor Bay Films

(My spoiler-free review)

In 1991, as the story goes, Ohio’s “Mr. Football” Scott Murphy helped Coldwater, Ohio win the state championship over 5-time champs Cuyahoga, but 20 years later, he’s a farmer facing harvest troubles, money troubles, and more pressure than winning a football game… he wants nothing more than to just play football again.

And he gets that chance when he wakes up 20 years in the past… back in high school.

While it taps into those high school emotions of future dreams, young love,  awkwardness, and friendships – “Touchback” does so without being overly dramatic… or overly comedic… and not too cliche.   Think of a more serious version of “Back to the Future” set in the sports world of “Miracle” or “Hoosiers”.

“Touchback” is also an inspirational/family movie without being preachy.  It
strikes a balance between cute and dramatic with elements of comedic relief throughout.

Director/writer Don Handfield’s story is well scripted, the characters are well developed, and the plot is well conceived and thought out, it doesn’t tale any shortcuts or let the audience off easy.

Our main character ‘Scott Murphy’, played by Brian Presley does so with layers of complication that lend credibility to the story and the accessibility of the character.  Presley has the blue collar, rugged, unassuming thing going for him that makes him easy to root for during the movie.

Brian Presley scene from "Touchback" courtesy Anchor Bay Films

Melanie Lynskey in a dramatic scene from "Touchback" courtesy Anchor Bay Films

Marc Blucas and Brian Presley discuss the big game in a scene from "Touchback" courtesy Anchor Bay Films

Christine Lahti and Brian Presley in an important scene from "Touchback" courtesy Anchor Bay Films

Kurt Russell discusses strategy with Brian Presley in a scene from "Touchback" courtesy Anchor Bay Films

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The filmmakers have surrounded Presley with a solid supporting cast: Melanie Lynskey plays his wife ‘Macy’ – who has an inherent nice, sweet, quiet, supportive, girl-next-door quality about her that will connect female audiences.  His loyal best friend ‘Chris’ – Marc Blucas – plays it right down the middle as the guy who had the same goals as Scott, except he made it.  But this character is not the stereotypical jock who left his hometown and friends in the rear view mirror – he plays it so well, its hard not to like him.  Scott’s mom – Christine Lahti – is perfect as the hard working single mom who puts her son ahead of herself.  Kurt Russell is everything you’d expect from a veteran actor – solid and convincing as ‘Coach Hand’, the coach and father figure that impacts Scott’s life.

The movie looks good – with solid production values: its well shot, well lit, with good camera tricks and movements to maximize the smaller $5 million budget.  The wardrobe and sets and everything looks lived in: worn denim, Scott’s old leg brace and rusty Chevy truck… by comparison, the crisp football jerseys and clean hallways of the high school when we go back in time lend to the intentional themes of old vs. new.  The scenery and look of Coopersville, Michigan made it the perfect fit for the movie.

The renaming of signs adds to the authentic look, but it was nice that the “Pal’s Diner” name was kept and abbreviated both in words and visuals as the “town diner”.

On the field, (more…)


“Touchback” ready for red carpet as it opens in West Michigan

April 19th, 2012 at 11:58 pm by under Entertainment
“Touchback” hits theaters in West Michigan

"Touchback" poster courtesy Hannibal Classics

On the same day as its local theatrical release, “Touchback” will have a red carpet premiere in Grand Rapids.  The premiere on opening night, April 20th at Celebration Cinema North is scheduled to include lead actor Brian Presley and Director/Writer Don Handfield.

Presley plays Scott Murphy, a former football star turned farmer and family man who considers taking his own life to save his family.  However, when he wakes up he finds himself back in the past, reliving the events that led up to his career-ending, life-altering injury.  He is forced to choose between his simple life and the path to fame and fortune.

“Touchback” is set in Coldwater, Ohio but filmed for several weeks during the summer of 2010, mostly in Coopersville, but also in Grand Rapids, Detroit, and Ohio in Coshocton, Columbus, and Warsaw.

RED CARPET PREMIERE AT CELEBRATION! NORTH

The red carpet Midwest premiere Friday, April 20th at 7:10pm will be a fundraiser for the West Michigan Film Office which works behind the scenes to get film projects interested in and filming in – West Michigan. The $20 ticket includes the movie, pop, popcorn, a walk down the red carpet, and a Q&A with Presley and others involved in making the movie.  You can get your  “Touchback” premiere tickets through this link.

Presley is only scheduled to be at the fundraiser showing and should be available to sign autographs and will give the audience insight into the making of the family drama during Q&A.  Bill Simonson from the Huge Show on WBBL FM does the radio play-by-play for “Touchback”.

Also on Friday, April 20th, “Touchback” will begin playing in four West Michigan theaters: Celebration! North, Celebration! South, Celebration! Rivertown, and AMC Star Alpine. Find showtimes at Celebration! Cinema through this link or at AMC Star Alpine through this link.  The movie is rated PG-13 and runs 2 hours and 2 minutes long.

RALLY AT PAL’S

There will be a rally for extras before the showing at 5:30pm at Pal’s Diner (6503 28th St Se, Grand Rapids).

Participants are encouraged to wear their Coldwater HS shirts, football jerseys or costumes used during the making of Touchback to this rally. Pal’s Diner has a starring role in “Touchback” and organizers have invited the 1200 extras and their 70′s vintage automobiles to rally in the parking lot prior to caravanning to the showing at Celebration North.

VIDEOS

My review of “Touchback” and more on 4-20-12 EightWest: http://youtu.be/aroJ4P3cpcU.

Preview of “Touchback”, focusing on the making of the movie 4-20-12: http://youtu.be/wmmB5E4NCz8.

Preview of ”Touchback” focusing on what the movie is about 4-20-12: http://youtu.be/mbPeJoXvz7k.

My interview with actor Marc Blucas 8-13-10 Part 1 of 2: http://youtu.be/kL0_aGgjCZ0.
Part 2 of my interview with actor Marc Blucas 8-13-10: http://youtu.be/Dj10y_Wpnfw.

My interview with actress Sarah Wright 8-13-10: http://youtu.be/xq6Q38fNFCw.

Watch local football players go through combine-style tryouts with the movie’s Sports Coordinator Mark Ellis from August 2010: http://youtu.be/eSvR2TZ36mM.

Some clips of the movie can be seen here: http://youtu.be/gYBDGn4yXA4 during my 4-13-12 EightWest segment.

You can watch the theatrical trailer for “Touchback” here: http://youtu.be/NUBbN0FNYxY .

(I’ll be adding more videos here and to my YouTube Page soon)

MY REVIEW

I gave “Touchback” a 7.0/10, its an inspiring, thought provoking drama, that will bring a smile to your face, and can make West Michigan proud that it was made here.

In a blender, mix: “Its A Wonderful Life”, “Back to the Future”, “Mr. Destiny”, “Field of Dreams”, “Miracle”, and “Hoosiers”…  take away the bigger budgets of most of those movies and you get “Touchback”.

Read my full, non-spoiler review of “Touchback”.

CAST

The cast includes Kurt Russell as the head coach, Presley in the lead role, Melanie Lynskey as his wife, Mark Blucas as a friend and teammate, Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Christine Lahti as the mother, Mark Ellis as opposition coach, Barry Sanders in a cameo role as an Assistant Coach, Drew Powell, James Duvall, and Austin Ross as teammates, Sarah Wright as cheerleader “Jenny”, Sianoa Smit-McPhee, and Kevin Covais.  Grand Rapids native David Diaz is a student and football player for Coldwater’s football team, wearing jersey #64.

Previous posts about “Touchback”:
4/5/12 - “Touchback” red carpet premiere planned
3/1/12 – “Touchback” trailer playing at local theaters
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“Touchback” trailer hits the net

March 21st, 2011 at 2:28 pm by under Entertainment

First trailer for “Touchback” hits internet, waiting for release details

 ”Touchback” filmed for several weeks during the summer of 2010, mostly in Coopersville, but also in Grand Rapids, Detroit, and Ohio in Coshocton, Columbus, and Warsaw.

The cast includes Kurt Russell as the head coach, Brian Presley in lead role, Melanie Lynskey as his wife, Mark Blucas as a friend and teammate, Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Christine Lahti as the mother, Mark Ellis as opposition coach, Barry Sanders in a cameo role as an Assistant Coach, Drew Powell, Sarah Wright, Sianoa Smit-McPhee, and Kevin Covais also star.

Touchback is written/directed by Don Handfield.

The movie is still in post-production, but the production company’s website indicates a May 2011 release.  However, we do not have official word on if that will be a national release or limited release or at a film festival or straight-to-DVD.  I am told they are working on a release date and there are hopes for a Grand Rapids premiere.

Sorry, trailer was taken down. (Had to remove the trailer because  it was not for public consumption. It was intended for sales, as it was edited – it tells basically the whole story – so it was not meant for general audiences. The PR for the production tells me they will contact me when they have a *real* trailer.)

I have captured several stills from the trailer here click on thumbails for larger picture:

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Touchback is a fantastical story about

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Tailgaters and older cars needed for “Touchback”

August 11th, 2010 at 2:15 pm by under Entertainment

CALL FOR Tailgaters and 1992 or older cars for “Touchback” HAS BEEN FILLED

 UPDATED 8/12/10: Casting company says all spots have been filled for Tailgaters and cars.

FROM PRESS RELEASE:

Extras Casting Director Jazzy T and TOUCHBACK production are looking for 100 cars from the year 1992 or previous to cast with their drivers in a movie starring Kurt Russell and Barry Sanders. Trucks, Cars, RVs and Campers welcome!  The older the better.

You must be available Aug 12th,13th,16th & 17th to work in Coopersville, MI (west of Grand Rapids). Filming will mostly be at night.

Pay Rate is $75/ 8 hrs . Ages 18 & up only with valid Michigan ID.

Click on this link to register: http://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?formkey=dG55eEw0dkpHUTZPRGFhWmc1d19GNVE6MQ

Coopersville will serve as the main filming location for “Touchback,” which began production in August.   “Touchback” will film around the city of Coopersville at numerous locations picked out by the filmmakers including a family farm, on the football field and several locations in the Grand Rapids area including “Pal’s Diner”.  Scenes at Coopersville High School Football Field are set for August 12, 13, 16 and 17 shooting overnight from 9:00pm to 6:00am most of the nights.

The cast includes Kurt Russell as the head coach, Brian Presley in lead role, Melanie Lynskey as his wife, Mark Blucas as a friend and teammate, Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Christine Lahti as the mother, Mark Ellis as opposition coach, Barry Sanders in a cameo role as an Assistant Coach, Drew Powell, Sarah Wright, Sianoa Smit-McPhee, and Kevin Covais also star.

Touchback is being written/directed by Don Handfield.

Plot summary from initial press release: (more…)


Barry Sanders also joining “Touchback”

August 4th, 2010 at 10:35 am by under Uncategorized

Hall of Fame football player and Detroit Lion great Barry Sanders expected to join the cast of “Touchback”

According to my sources Barry Sanders will be joining the cast of “Touchback” in the coming days.

While the announcement has not yet been made official, the 42 year old Sanders will be one of the other coaches in the movie along with Kurt Russell.

Sanders has a long history with football - played for 10 seasons with the Detroit Lions (1989-1998), was a 2004 Hall of Fame inductee, was the first player to rush for 1,000 yards his first 10 seasons, led NFL in rushing four times, 1997 NFL MVP when he gained 2,053 yards including record 14 straight 100-yard games, career rushing record: 15,269 yards, 99 TDs, First- or Second-team All-NFL each of his 10 seasons, selected to 10 Pro Bowls, was Detroit’s first-round draft pick, 1989 (out of Oklahoma State).

Coopersville High School will serve as the main filming location for “Touchback,” which began production in August.   “Touchback” will film around the city of Coopersville at numerous locations picked out by the filmmakers including a family farm, on the football field and in the Grand Rapids area.  Scenes at Coopersville High School Football Field are set for August 12, 13, 16 and 17 shooting overnight from 9:00pm to 6:00am most of the nights.

The rest of the cast includes Kurt Russell as the head coach, Brian Presley in lead role, Melanie Lynskey as his wife, Mark Blucas as a friend and teammate, Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Christine Lahti as the mother, Drew Powell, Sarah Wright, Sianoa Smit-McPhee, and Kevin Covais also star.

Touchback is being written/directed by Don Handfield. (more…)


Kurt Russell joins “Touchback” cast

August 3rd, 2010 at 11:57 pm by under Entertainment

Kurt Russell joins cast of football drama “Touchback” as coach, not only big name involved

  
 Kurt Russell will be the head high school football coach for the fantasy drama “Touchback”.

Coopersville High School will serve as the main filming location for “Touchback,” which is set for production in August.   “Touchback” will film around the city of Coopersville and on the football field starting next month.   Scenes at Coopersville High School Football Field are set for August 12, 13, 16 and 17 shooting overnight from 9:00pm to 6:00am most of the nights.  Scenes will also be shot around Coopersville at numerous locations picked out by the filmmakers including a family farm and some locations in town.

59 year old Kurt Russell will play “Coach Hand”… he’s played a coach in a sports movie before – in the 2004 hockey movie “Miracle” as real-life coach Herb Brooks.  

  The veteran actor has starred in numerous movies like ”Death Proof” (2007), “Grindhouse” (2007), “Poseidon” (2006), “Sky High” (2005), ”3000 Miles to Graceland” (2001), “Soldier’ (1998), “Breakdown” (1997), “Escape from L.A.” (1996), “Stargate” (1994), “Tombstone” (1993), “Unlawful Entry” (1992), “Backdraft” (1991), “Tango & Cash” (1989), “Overboard” (1987), “Big Trouble in Little China” (1986), “Silkwood” (1983), “The Thing” (1982), and his breakout role “Escape from New York” (1981) as Snake Plissken.

The rest of the cast includes Brian Presley in lead role, Melanie Lynskey as his wife, Mark Blucas as a friend and teammate, Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Christine Lahti as the mother, Drew Powell, Sarah Wright, Sianoa Smit-McPhee, and Kevin Covais also star.

Touchback is being written/directed by Don Handfield.

Plot summary from initial press release:
Touchback is a fantastical story about getting a second chance at life. At the brink of financial disaster, a former football star turned farmer and family man attempts suicide to save his family. However, when he wakes up he finds himself back in the past, reliving the events that led up to his career-ending, life-altering injury. He is forced to choose between his simple life and the path to fame and fortune.

Additional Plot Summary: (more…)


Paid extras for “Touchback”

July 22nd, 2010 at 2:01 pm by under Entertainment
Open casting call for paid extras for “Touchback”
   
UPDATED 7/29/10: Producers are looking for extras to fill out the cast of their drama “Touchback” set against the backdrop of football.  The movie will be filming for several weeks in August in Grand Rapids and the Coopersville area.  The paid extra positions are for a $75 day rate.

 
 The casting call will be Thursday July 29th and Friday July 30th  from 1:00pm – 3:00pm each day at the West Michigan Film Office (741 Kenmoor Ave Suite E, Grand Rapids, MI).
 
Available paying roles from press release:
Tailgaters with VEHICLES 1994 or OLDER
Factory Workers age 40 – 60 
Farmers/ Townsfolk 18 + 
Bank Staff “Yuppies” in 20′s 
Students 18 – 30 
Hotel Guests age 50 + 
 
UPDATED INFO: Also, on Wednesday, August 4th and Thursday, August 5th there will be tryouts for experienced football players need for “Touchback”.  The shooting dates at Coopersville High School football field will be August 12th, 13th, 16th, and 17th.  The filmmakers are hoping for 2,000 additional (unpaid) extras to fill the stands for the night-time filming.  August 12th will be filming 9pm-2am, the other three days will be sunset to sunrise (9pm-6am).
 
Story summary/more info from press release:  ”Touchback” is a football story about overcoming life’s setbacks, redemption, self improvement and recognizing the value of life. Public scenes in the movie such as High School Hallways, Football Stadium and the Factory scenes, come alive with the help of Michigan residents who work as background actors. No experience or headshots needed, just come as you are!”
  
How to Apply:  (more…)

Casting Football Players for “Touchback”

July 14th, 2010 at 4:55 pm by under Entertainment

“Touchback” to film football scenes at Coopersville High School in August

 UPDATED 8/4/10: Non-registered walk-ups are allowed Wednesday until 5pm and Thursday from 8am-11am.   ”Touchback” will be filming scenes at Coopersville High School in August…. tryouts will be Wednesday, August 4th and Thursday August 5th.  More details to come.

Info From Press Release:

Coopersville, MI  (July 14, 2010) – Touchback, starring Brian Presley and written/directed by Don Handfield, will be shooting action-packed football scenes for the film at Coopersville High School Football Field on August 13, 16 and 17th.  Those interested in being film extras are invited to email the Touchback extras coordinator for more information at:  touchbackextras@gmail.com.

Sports Studio to host open casting call in Grand Rapids for TOUCHBACK

Football players are being sought for a major motion picture to be filmed in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area in late July/early August, 2010.

Touchback is a fantastical story about getting a second chance at life. At the brink of financial disaster, a former football star turned farmer and family man attempts suicide to save his family. However, when he wakes up he finds himself back in the past, reliving the events that led up to his career-ending, life-altering injury. He is forced to choose between his simple life and the path to fame and fortune.

PLAYER REQUIREMENTS: Age 18-30 and have extensive football experience. Players should NOT be seeking NCAA eligibility through a college program. Selected player positions are paid positions.
Interested players need to pre-register by creating a profile and submit for Touchback at www.sportsstudiocasting.com.

SPORTS COORDINATOR, Mark Ellis will be conducting the tryouts. Mark is the action coordinator and head of Production at Sports Studio and has worked on many of the major sports action films of the past 2 decades including JUST WRIGHT, WE ARE MARSHALL, INVINCIBLE, THE LONGEST YARD, and MIRACLE.

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Original post: (more…)