Again, Central Massachusetts will become the primary filming spot for another upcoming feature film. The area was all abuzz when the filming of the recently Oscar-nominated and Golden Globe-winning American Hustle was being shot in the Worcester neighbourhood and is still the one of the most exciting happenings the area had experienced.
They have barely caught their breath and already the movie “Tumbledown,” is rolling in crews to begin filming there as well. The film will star Blythe Danner, Rebecca Hall, Jason Sudeikis, Griffin Dunne and Joe Manganiello and is supposed to be set in Maine but the sites that are being used in Massachusetts in the feature will easily translate as that state. Directed by Sean Mewshaw, the general premise of the movie is the recounting of life of a folk singer’s widow (Hall) who is writing about his life while she fends off attempts of a New York writer (Sudeikis) who is also writing about her late husband.
Crews began to filter in last week, setting up for a shoot at the cemetery as well as capturing some street footage on Upper Merriam Road just past Route 31. John Lebeaux spoke on behalf of the town, explaining that the crews will be returning later this month and will be using the Carey family’s private home as a filming location as well. He is very encouraging of the film industry and their use of the town as a location shoot for this film and those that have come before it, including American Hustle and in 2005, The Legend of Lucy Keyes.
Thus far, crews have been seen on location at Hager Park, Meetinghouse Pond, Leominster State Forest at Crow Hill and at 2 Worcester Road in Westminster. The town boasts many scenic areas and makes a great location shooting spot. The production company expects to also shoot in a classroom in the state university as well as the Leicester recycling centre.
While there are some area shut downs, it is primarily business as usual for everyone in the town and it has not created any kind of inconvenience. In fact, many are delighted by the positive impacts on the economy. Chris Byers, the director of marketing and operations for New England Studios, which just opened in January says that the film is the studio’s first production client. He says that they are expecting a pretty busy season ahead throughout spring and fall so Tumbledown is an excellent way for them to work out any kinks.
This is the only production being filmed currently in Massachusetts and while the area will be representative of Maine, it is a common practice for crews to select outside locations as settings for other places. American Hustle was supposed to be occurring in New Jersey and DC. It is assumed that the substitutions are generally based on incentives around cost and convenience. It’s definitely worth it to enhance the attraction of an area for film production by reducing fees and taxes as it often serves to bring business to the area, create jobs and draw the attention of press that can highlight it for future economic investment.