Horror movie about once-prosperous mill town begins filming in Auburn

Posted Feb. 22, 2014, at 10:31 a.m.

AUBURN, Maine — Madison Caswell is pretty sure she wants to be an actress.

The 12-year-old Orono girl, with tufts of dark red hair and just a smattering of freckles, already has one professional motion picture under her belt. On Friday, she was looking to get movie No. 2 underway, and boy, was she ever in the right place.

Hollywood? Some fancy studio in New York?

No. She was at Minot Avenue in Auburn, huddled inside a long, ramshackle barn with a leaky roof and just enough room for the lights, heaters and five dozen people waiting to launch their acting careers.

Welcome to the first of three days of filming as Portland’s Gum Spirits Productions continues to shoot its chiller, “Anniversary,” the tale of a once-prosperous mill town that hit hard times when industry left.

Sound familiar? The filmmakers wanted people who look like small-town Mainers and that’s exactly what they got.

“We definitely don’t want anybody who is polished,” production manager Bethany Field said when they first started casting. “These are folks who have been cut off for a long time, and they don’t really have a sense of what’s hip or cool or even the fact that they should necessarily get haircuts.”

No problem there. Inside the long barn on Minot Avenue, most of the aspiring actors looked anything but polished. They huddled in the cold, wearing wool hats and thick coats. Some had wild beards and untucked shirts. There was an abundance of flannel and the steady clomp of winter boots. One wild-eyed man wore a wool Bruins cap. He looked a bit like Jack Elam.

Perfect.

Gum Spirits has been filming all over Maine and the producers say they have found some real gems among all the snow, ice and flannel.

For the full story, visit Sun Journal at www.sunjournal.com/news/lewiston-auburn/2014/02/21/rolling-filming-begins-auburn/1495571#

 

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