Here in Bainbridge – Lights, camera, and action

Published 8:18 pm Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Bainbridge and Decatur County will be the setting for a Christian-based film, its producers said.

A crew of “Fishers of Men” are scheduled to be in Bainbridge in May and June filming a trailer of the film and then are scheduled to be back later in the summer to film the entire motion picture, said Joshua Mills, chief executive officer and founder of Desert Wind Films of Woodland Hills, Calif.

In a horrible chain of events, one of two twin brothers gives up his life for his other brother, said Steven Camp, chief financial officer of the production company.

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Set in 1955, with flashbacks to 1945, some of Bainbridge’s and Decatur County’s buildings and settings made it a perfect fit for “Fishers of Men,” said Mills and Camp.

“We needed a courthouse … and your courthouse is perfect,” Camp said. Other places that sold the production company were the Flint River, which Mills said will probably be seen in the opening and closing scenes of the movie and is the backbone of it; the old Bainbridge High School, the Old Library on Broughton Street, the old jail cells in the Firehouse Gallery and Center and the Trulock house in Climax.

The story is based on a 2-1/2-page short story written by Robert Cox.

The budget for the film is less than $1 million, and they are patterning the film’s budget and distribution after the highly successful “Fireproof.”

“Fireproof” was produced by Sherwood Pictures, which is part of Sherwood Church in Albany, Ga. It had a budget of approximately $500,000, but it grossed more than $33 million.

“Over the past couple of years, the faith-based market has really picked up,” Mills said. “‘Fireproof,’ it didn’t get the best reviews, but hats off to the guys in Albany, they shoot the film for half a million dollars.”

A large part of the success of “Fireproof” was how the community supported the production of the film and how word of mouth spread the desire for people to go see it.

Mills and Camp said they are hoping for the same with “Fishers of Men.”

“We are really excited to have the community of Bainbridge involved in our project, and I don’t mean just financially. There are many ways that people or businesses can support this project without investing,” Camp said.

For example, they said local churches may volunteer to help feed the cast and crew during the filming, or they may have a need for volunteer extras for certain crowd scenes.

The film’s prospectus states that Desert Wind Films is “Focused on telling a story that sends a powerful moral message with material that is both wholesome and rivetingly realistic. Although ‘Fishers of Men’ is a metaphor for the perfect example and redeeming sacrifice of Christ, we want to make certain we appeal to the broadest possible audience by not overtly ‘sermonizing.’”

Mills cites “The Green Mile,” that starred Tom Hanks, as a story of innocence, faith, miracles and transcendent love that grossed more than $270 million worldwide.

Rick McCaskill, the executive director of the Decatur County Development Authority, worked with the production company and recruited Paige Robinson and Adrienne Harrison to take pictures and send them to the film company.

McCaskill had been on Florida’s film commission and is working with the company in coming to Bainbridge.

“I think it’s going to be a good film,” said McCaskill, adding that there are many possibilities of the community to become involved. “It will be fun.”