'The Fields' wins first at film festival
SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Writer and producer of the film "The Fields" Harrison Smith, to whom the events actually happened, clowns with his on-screen counterpart, Joshua Ormond, at the Buffalo Niagara Film Festival, where the movie won Best Feature Film.
A small town teacher writes a script and dreams of someday seeing it on the big screen and then living the life he always hoped he would, of writing and producing his own films, and maybe producing other people's scripts.
Stuff like this only happens in the movies. Right?
Harrison Smith of Kunkletown is now living his dream.
He wrote and co-produced the movie.
"The Fields," which stars Cloris Leachman, Bev Appleton and Joshua Ormond. "The Fields" is a suspense thriller based on true events that took place in a small Pennsylvania town in the fall of 1973. It tells the story of a young boy (Smith) and his family who are terrorized by a mysterious presence in the endless fields of corn surrounding their old farmhouse.
It gets better.
It had its world premiere at the Sept. 24 Buffalo Niagara Film Festival and won Best Feature Film. Smith was there to accept the award for the production.
According to Marc Kruskol of MJK Public Relations of Palmdale, Calif., "The world premiere screening packed the house, received wild applause and an ovation at the conclusion. 'The Fields,' which was featured in the prime time slot, had stiff competition, including the acclaimed 'Wedding Party' and 'Niagara Falls.'"
Smith says that the people laughed, screamed and jumped in all the right spots.
How did he feel when he learned his film won?
"To quote Dudley Moore from the original 'Arthur' when he was asked how it felt to be so rich, he replied, 'Feels great!'" says Smith.
Wait. There's more.
Now "The Fields" is going to be presented in true Hollywood fashion at a Red Carpet Premiere at The Sherman Theater in Stroudsburg on Friday, Oct. 21 at 7 p.m., doors opening at 6 p.m. The general seating admission is $10 and $20 will include a meet and greet session following the movie. It will be a chance for all of Smith's family, friends and local community to share in this exciting new chapter in his life.
"This is the same theater I sat in as a boy to watch 'The Empire Strikes Back,' 'Blade Runner,' 'Creepshow' and so many more. The Sherman is an important part of Stroudsburg's heritage and it is an honor and a really big thrill to have my film shown there," says Smith.
The event was set up by George and Connie Roberts, Blue Ridge Communications Channel 13 TV personalities, and the United Way of Monroe County.
"They approached me. I had to clear it through Fabrication Films, who bought the film in April of 2011. Rich of The Sherman has bent over backward to accommodate this, opening his theater to this event. He and his staff are doing so much for this. All the proceeds go directly to the United Way," says Smith.
Smith will be there as well as Bev Appleton, who plays Cloris Leachman's husband, Hiney, and the young star, Joshua Ormond, who is the center of the film. A number of "Fields" cast will be there. Leachman was scheduled but will not be able to make it in person, as her "Raising Hope" schedule is too tight, and she has a one-woman show she is doing across the nation. However, she plans to be there via Skype to talk to fans and answer questions after the show.
"She plans to do this by squeezing us in while flying," says Smith.
So, is that all?
Well, he recently completed his second movie, "Six Degrees of Hell" starring Corey Feldman which was shot on the location of the Hotel of Horrors in Saylorsburg. The extended, full trailer of the film will play exclusively before "The Fields" is shown. Smith can only hope it will be as successful if not more than "The Fields."
"It is a great trailer and a number of cast and the director of 'Six Degrees of Hell' will be at The Sherman available for questions, sign autographs, etc. There's a lot included with the $10 ticket price. Hope we sell it out for a good cause!" says Smith
"The Fields" will next appear at the Big Apple Film Festival in NYC and will be headlining at the Thriller Chiller Film Festival this October.
The film's official website can be found at www.thefieldsmovie.com.
Smith's dreams are definitely coming true.
It's almost scary.