Route 30-2?

June 3, 2009

‘Route 30’ director makes ‘trilogy’ plans

The success of “Route 30,” John Putch’s low-budget, local film that has won 14 awards at film festivals across the country, has motivated his creative genius to make two more films about the area and its folklore.

“I’m making a sequel,” Putch said with excitement. “It will be the second film in the ‘Route 30’ trilogy!”

Putch has already drafted a script for a second installment about the local highway and area myths and truths intertwined with loveable characters. Putch said some of the original characters will appear in the second film that is expected to start production in October 2010.

“The tagline is ‘New stories, same highway,’” he said. “It will take place in Pennsylvania and I plan to condense it (the coverage area) even more. This one will focus on Fayetteville and Caledonia, the area between Gettysburg and Chambersburg. That’s where the ghosts are, the Bigfoots are and where alien spacecrafts land.”

Producer Jonathan Taylor said Putch didn’t mention there would be more than one “Route 30” film made.

“But during the experience of this film, there were so many moments that were creative and as soon as it was done and people took to the characters, I could tell there were ideas for another one.”

Taylor said Putch began working on the new script after the original film premiered in York last fall. “I read the script a few months ago,” he added. “I’m sure he’s not completely finished. He was out of the country for awhile and I’m sure he’ll work on it more this summer.”

Putch plans to officially announce his upcoming plans at a press conference Saturday, May 30, in Chambersburg’s Capitol Theatre.

Premiere
Putch and his cast and crew members are preparing for a June 20 premiere of the original “Route 30” film at the Capitol Theatre in Chambersburg.

“It’s about time we’re showing it in Chambersburg,” Putch said. “We shot part of the movie there and I was born there. I can’t wait to show it for the people who couldn’t make it to Gettysburg.”

The film will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, June, 20, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, June 21. Tickets are $15. The showings will be presented by the Cumberland Valley Film Club, the Capitol Theatre and Patriot Federal Credit Union. A pre-show reception with members of the cast and crew will be held from 5:30 to 7:15 p.m. June 20 in the Woods Center in Chambersburg. A limited number of tickets are available for $25.

Putch said he has been working closely with Chambersburg Mayor Pete Lagiovane to have the premiere held at the theater. Putch said he will be joined by his sister, Pamela Putch, an executive at NBC; Curtis Armstrong, best known for portraying Booger in the “Revenge of the Nerds” films from the 1980s and 1990s; Mister Ed of Mister Ed’s Elephant Museum in Orrtanna; Taylor; St. Thomas native Alicia Fusting; Carl Schurr, a former proprietor of Totem Pole; and a few others from Los Angeles for a question-and-answer session after the film Saturday and Sunday.

The film also will be shown at the Artsfest Film Festival in Harrisburg on May 25. Putch also will travel to England at the beginning of June to show the film at two festivals.

Success
Putch said previously he decided to make a second low-budget film since his 2006 film, “Mojave Phone Booth” starring Steve Guttenberg and DeLuise, won seven awards at five different film festivals.

“I decided I wanted to set it in familiar settings,” Putch said. “I had great memories and great resources (in Fayetteville), and to make small movies you need help and resources. I thought, ‘Where can I go where it can be friendly?’ That’s how it came to be. I don’t particularly care for the way Hollywood does their films and TV shows. I think the better movie is the more economical endeavor and the one that is driven by the content.”

Audiences across the U.S. have accepted the film and appreciated it, according to Putch.

“We won 14 awards and have been in 30 or 40 film festivals and we’re still going strong,” he said. “We’ve won the Grand Jury Award for best feature in Iowa and recently won the ‘Best Use of Booger’ award (for Armstrong) in Seattle. That’s one of my favorites!

“I’m happy to say that for the people who choose to go see it, the reaction has been tremendous,” he continued. “They don’t get all the nuances that we get, but they are still pleased after they see it. They are incredibly interested in what was real and what was fictional. Here (locally), they get that. But John G. Public in Palm Springs or Chicago thinks everything is fictional until the question-and-answer when I tell them Mister Ed is real, the Totem Pole is real and that my father was Bill Putch. They’re fascinated by that.”

Putch is working on getting “Route 30” on DVD and hopes to release it by the end of 2009.

Taylor said he is not surprised by the film’s success because it is original. On the other hand, he is a bit surprised because “the film is so original.”

“We didn’t make it to win festivals, but it’s always encouraging to have audiences enjoy it,” he added. “I’m just a bit surprised because it’s so unique.”

Taylor said he, Putch and the cast and crew are extremely excited to show it to a local audience once again. It was shown at the Majestic Theater in Gettysburg in September and at the Strand Capitol Theatre in York in October.

“It really brings the project full circle,” he said. “Other audiences like it, but not like they do at home. I can’t wait to watch it with the local audience.”

Record Herald by Denise Bonura
http://www.therecordherald.com/news/x862899590/Route-30-director-makes-trilogy-plans?popular=true

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Route 30: Three Stories’ Debuts at Ligonier Theater

February 23, 2009

A stretch of Pennsylvania highway was the spark behind one filmmaker’s masterpiece.

“Route 30: Three Stories, One Highway” was written, produced and directed by John Putch, who is based in California. The film was shot between Chambersburg and Gettysburg. Now, it travels back to the area, this time showing on the big screen at Ligonier Theater beginning Feb. 20.

“In my effort to be original, I decided to take my ‘no frills’ moviemaking team back to my hometown and shoot some fun stories about people and themes that meant a lot to me growing up in the area,” Putch says.
Putch is the son of Bill Putch and Jean Stapleton, best known for her role as Edith Bunker on the television sitcom “All in the Family.” The two founded Totem Pole Playhouse, a summer-stock theater situated along Route 30 at Caledonia State Park, midway between Chambersburg and Gettysburg.

His “back to basics” moviemaking plan is simple: Share the profits with all of those involved in the production, and keep the budget low and the filming to a minimum, allowing the professional actors, directors and crew members to produce a spectacular show.
“The less you have, the easier it is. My new motto, when I’m not working for a Hollywood entity, is ‘less professional, more fun,'” he says.

The film was shot in 18 days in October 2007 with a cast of 15 and eight crew members. It includes three interconnecting comedic stories from folks along Route 30, also known as the Lincoln Highway, in south-central Pennsylvania.

“Deer Hunters Wives” tells of the frustrations of Civil War tour guide Mandy (Nathalie Boltt), who obsesses over Jennie Wade, the only civilian killed at the battle of Gettysburg. Mandy’s friend June (Christine Elise McCarthy) struggles with an Internet porn scheme to make extra money.

In “What I Believe,” a man (Kevin Rahm of “Desperate Housewives”) seeks the help of a Christian Scientist (Wil Love) to heal his back pain and explain the Big Foot that chased him down the mountainside.

“Original Bill” is the story of a writer (David DeLuise, son of actor, writer and chef Dom DeLuise) who buys a farmhouse in the country hoping to find inspiration to write his novel. He is sidetracked by his Amish neighbor (Dana Delany of “Desperate Housewives”), who smokes, drinks, swears and secretly watches his TV.
“The film also features properties along Route 30 and was partially filmed at Tin Lizzy’s in Youngstown, Pa., and Country Cafe & Video in Pleasant Unity,” says Cathi Rhodes, interim director of the Valley Players of Ligonier.

Putch says the film has been shown in York and Gettysburg, and he is looking for more venues to show the film along the Lincoln Highway.

“We started in July of 2008 and will continue to the end of 2009. We’ve played 21 festivals and have racked up 11 awards. We are pleased at the reaction, and hope others want to see it,” he says. “By the way, I’ll show this movie any place that wants it.”
Putch says that when time and budget allows, he attends the viewing of the film to participate in a question-and-answer session afterward. Although Putch will be unable to attend the Ligonier showing, he will send a representative to address the audience.

By Carla DeStefano
FOR THE TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
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BachelorMan Flies to DVD

November 24, 2008

Magnolia Home Entertainment, along with Films On Tap, an Independent film company, announced the DVD launch of romantic comedy, “BachelorMan,” into the US and Canadian markets.

“I’m thrilled that BachelorMan will be seen by a national audience after the great success it has had at film festivals worldwide,” said Films On Tap producer Rodney Lee Conover. “Magnolia Pictures is the perfect partner to distribute BachelorMan on DVD.”

The film stars David DeLuise (Dom’s son), as Ted Davis, the ultimate bachelor and his alter-ego: “BachelorMan.” He’s got the rap, the charm and his little black book weighs several pounds – that is until he meets Heather, the pretty brunette next door played by Missi Pyle (“Dodgeball” , “50 First Dates” , “Along Came Polly” , “Big Fish”), who refuses to fall for anything in Davis’ very deep bag of tricks.

“BachelorMan is a fresh, smart, hilarious comedy that will appeal to a wide audience,” added Conover. “We have every expectation that this will be a runaway hit as well as a cult classic among the college crowd for years to come.”

The pictures was directed by Sundance alumni John Putch (“Valerie Flake”), written by Conover, Jeff Hause & Dave Hines (“Once Bitten”) and based loosely on characters from Conover’s stand-up routines. Karen Bailey and Helen Woo also produced with Exec Producer Tad Lebeck. “It will be great to see BachelorMan in front of an audience, because it was made for audiences…,” Director John Putch.

The project won 26 festival awards, including “Audience Award for Best Feature” at Palm Beach and LA’s Dances With Films; and “Best Screenplay” in San Diego and at the Oxford International Film Festival.

Whether BachelorMan is spraying Lemon Pledge over the door to make his date think he spent the whole day dusting, or whipping out his trusty “Poopmoose” in a nightclub (it’s his custom-made candy dispenser), BachelorMan knows he’s not God’s gift to women, but is just optimistic enough to think that they’re God’s gift to him.

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