Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Public Enemies locations being chosen

Wisconsin's getting ready to film PUBLIC ENEMIES, Melanie Conklin in her entire article found in here: http://www.madison.com/wsj/home/column/275524 writes "Cobbling together bits and pieces from extras, antique car owners, government officials and tips, here are the best answers I have to the burning questions on when and where we might experience a brush with Hollywood in Wisconsin."

Excerpts related to Depp below:

"Downtown Columbus, according to residents and the Portage Daily Register, is having buildings redone to give them a 1930s look, including replacement awnings that are already being installed as modern signs are being removed. And signs went up this week saying the main drag through town, Highway 73, will be closed from Monday to March 20. Scott Robbe, executive director of Film Wisconsin, has also confirmed that Columbus will play a "prominent part" in "Public Enemies." Kelly Thompson-Frater, who is playing an extra and driving a 1931 Dodge (that belonged to her grandfather, who as the sheriff in Hurley took this car out on a raid chasing Dillinger), has been instructed to have herself and the car in Columbus on March 17. She adds that she 's been told the "full cast" with around 50 historic cars will be on hand to re-enact the Greencastle, Ind., bank robbery.

Eric Hoffman, curator at the Historic Auto Attractions in Roscoe, Ill., tells me that on Tuesday, staff from "Public Enemies" borrowed a historic automobile from the museum that he 's been told will be driven by Depp.

"The car is the actual car that John Dillinger used for his getaway from the Greencastle, Ind., bank robbery," says Hoffman, citing what had been the largest bank heist, netting $75,000, when it occurred on Oct. 23, 1933. Universal has borrowed the car for up to four weeks, but invited Hoffman for the filming on March 17. He adds that having Depp drive it, "just adds to the character of the car."

For Madison residents wondering if the capital city will get a piece of the action, that's still in flux. Chandra Miller Fienen, the state Department of Commerce point person aiding the movie, says, "They are still looking at a variety of places and we're trying to facilitate that as they identify what they are interested in. 'Public Enemies' will be the first film that has applied for and will receive film tax credits so we are trying to become the point person for government."

And Robert Chappell, spokesperson for Lt. Gov. Barbara Lawton, who took producers and location scouts from Universal on a tour in late January, says "indications are that something will be happening" at the Capitol. "They were interested in the North Hearing Room," says Chappell. "I think they are interested in scheduling that." The room, located across from the Assembly Chambers, has an orange glow because of its natural light and features elaborate historic murals. It may be used to film the hearing where J. Edgar Hoover testified before Congress, says Chappell. That raises yet another unanswered question: Who should we be watching for to play Hoover?"

Copyright ©
2008 Wisconsin State Journal

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