BANGOR, Maine — Hundreds of aspiring stars from across the state descended on Seasons’ Grille & Lounge on Saturday in hopes of landing a role in a future movie titled, “The Girl in the Lake.”
Los Angeles-based Epiphany Pictures and Sternman Productions are producing the movie, and the companies are seeking “people of all ages, shapes and sizes” for “nonspeaking” roles in the film. Other casting calls have been held in California and Colorado, according to backstage.com, a job posting search site for actors.
Towns in Maine, California and Colorado will appear in the film, according to Thomas Hildreth, one of the producers who was in Bangor on Saturday. Filming in Maine begins Sept. 24 in Millinocket, he said.
A synopsis posted on several casting websites says the low-budget feature film is based on the novel “June Bug” by Chris Fabry.
“Nine-year-old Katie has spent her life traveling the country in an RV with her single father … until she sees her portrait on a missing child poster and realizes that the man she thinks is her loving father may in fact be her kidnapper. Meanwhile, a small-town sheriff and the girl’s grandfather try to figure out the truth when new evidence surfaces,” the synopsis states.
Hildreth said he would be one of the leads, alongside Ted Levine, who is currently on the FX television show, “The Bridge,” and may be best known for his role as Buffalo Bill in “Silence of the Lambs.” The young female star of the movie will be 9-year-old Maggie Elizabeth Jones, who Hildreth called a “rising star.” Jones recently appeared in the comedy “Identity Thief,” as well as “We Bought a Zoo.”
Hildreth said the lead roles have all been decided, but the producers need about 100 Mainers to serve as extras and day players who might speak a couple lines for the film. Those chosen will receive lunch and might be able to see themselves in a church or bar scene or walking the streets of Millinocket when the final product is released at film festivals, Hildreth said.
Maine will play an important role in the film, according to the producer. It’s where the original crime occurs and where the film’s resolution takes place.
Bob Daisey, a 67-year-old Bangor resident who retired from his job counseling military veterans earlier this year, was in line to audition for the movie at Seasons. Once inside, people responding to the casting call each had their pictures and information taken by representatives of the film company.
“I go to a lot of auditions, [but] I don’t get a lot of parts,” Daisey said with a chuckle as he waited in line. He said he picked up acting after his retirement and has performed in plays on the midcoast, as well as made appearances in radio dramas.
Asked what part he might be suited for in the movie, Daisey replied, “maybe the crotchety old neighbor.”
In line behind Daisey were 11-year-old Aurora and 8-year-old Naomi Burmeister of Ellsworth, alongside their mother Pilar. The girls said they were nervous but excited by the idea of appearing in a movie. They’ve both acted in school plays, and their favorite was “Cinderella” at The Grand in Ellsworth.
“I like how you can be a different person than you are every other day,” Aurora said.
A friend and schoolmate of the Burmeister sisters, 11-year-old Bronwyn Beardsley of Surry, also showed up to audition with her brother Biruk, 10, sister Eden, 7, and mother.
Bronwyn said the casting was “a little bit scary” because there’s no way of knowing what sorts of people the casting directors are looking for.
“You don’t know how many they need,” she said.
“They could be looking for people with purple eyes for all we know, and no one has purple eyes,” she added. Someone standing in line pointed out to the girl that Elizabeth Taylor was known for her stunning violet eyes.