“This is important to us,” Maxwell said. “We want to get the word out that this is an actual issue. It isn’t just a little student film.”
Hickory Principal Chris Gill said he sees “Something to Write Home About” as “another option” in promoting positive behavior in students, in line with past efforts such as the Prom Promise, mock funerals and mock accidents.
Gill said he talked with Chase and Maxwell about what would be in the film before giving them the OK to shoot scenes in the school and during school time. He said he wanted to make sure it would deliver a positive message.
The filmmakers said they hope using students as actors and the students’ real names as their character names will help young people feel a personal connection to what happens on the screen.
00020000079100000A6378B,Gill said emotional reactions are important to students, and he thought that showing students a movie made by and starring their classmates will help trigger such a response.
Chase and Maxwell began writing and shooting the film in January, using their own camera equipment.
“We had a $0 budget,” Chase said.
“I think the most we paid was Gerald Koledin paid $3 for a pretzel at the mall,” Maxwell said. “Other than that, it’s been mostly gas and time.
Working under such conditions, “makes it fun,” Maxwell said. “I feel some of the motivation has been to do what we can with what we have.”
Thanks to the community, they actually ended up with more than they would have had on their own.
The Spadafora family opened their house to 30 kids to film the party scene, and allowed the filmmakers to use their editing software, which is better than what Chase and Maxwell had
Tiffany Daley permitted her restaurant, Breakfast at Tiffany’s in Sharpsville, to be used for a scene, and even cooked for the crew. John Flynn opened up Flynn Funeral Home in Hermitage, and helped the auteurs line up shots.