Several prominent New York filmmakers and actors have teamed up with some local Iowans to make the Independent Film, "A Place For Heroes," in Traer, Clutier and Tama County.
Staten Island, New York Producer Sam Borowski teamed up with LaCrosse, Wisconsin-area Writer-Director Scott Thompson of MyTown Pictures to make this World War II era drama set in Iowa.
"It's amazing to be able to tell a wonderful story that needs to be told, and to do it in a part of the country that needs to be seen," said Borowski. "I think Iowa is still untapped in terms of potential for both independent and Studio movies."
One of the first things Borowski did was to bring along several prominent New Yorkers to the production including Brooklyn native and Legendary Actor, Paul Sorvino to the lead role of Vincent, and his nephew Bill Sorvino, a wonderful actor in his own right, who will be playing the villain Glenn. The latter Sorvino hails from Chatham, New Jersey, just a stone's throw from New York.
"It will be fun - it's like having family around - wait I will have some family around (with my nephew Bill Sorvino and my friend Sam Borowski)," Sorvino quipped. "In a way, it's like coming back to Brooklyn, because I have fellow New Yorkers here. And, New Yorkers they speak a certain language ... a language all their own."
One of the other immediate hires Borowski made was to cast Samantha Tuffarelli in the supporting role of Nola. Tuffarelli, a rising young actress from The Bronx, was a cast member on the popular PBS television series "SESAME STREET," for three years as a child, and some of her more recent credits include, "SEX AND THE CITY THE MOVIE." She also has several other projects on her plate, however, that didn't stop her from traveling to Iowa to make HEROES.
"I was really excited to come to Iowa, because not only was I getting to work on a great movie with great actors, and its not only a period piece, but I get to see a piece of America I've always wanted to see," Tuffarelli said. "It's incredibly beautiful and serene country out here."
Tuffarelli even joined both Borowski and Paul Sorvino at the Meskwaki Settlement to see their tribe's history, visit the museum and pose for pictures with a very welcoming crowd last week.
Another actor to join the crew during this week's shoot dates is Robert Pralgo, a Bronx native. Pralgo had a major supporting role on the CW show, "THE VAMPIRE DIARIES," and currently has a recurring role on the MTV Show, "TEEN WOLF."
Shooting continues throughout the next seven days, mostly in Clutier at a historic dance hall. It's been a unique experience for both Borowski and his New York crew, as well as Thompson and the local Iowans in the cast and crew.
"It's awe-inspiring to bring together some of the most talented people in the country to tell a story about the sacrifice of actual heroes," Thompson said of his visiting New Yorkers. "Working with the New Yorkers (and some from Hollywood) in Iowa, hopefully their professionalism will rub off on us.
"And we are hoping, our homegrown hospitality and generosity will have an effect on them, as well."