TUPPER LAKE - One local town could garner international attention as it serves as the stage for a mainstream movie.
"Recreator," a full-length feature film with plans for a worldwide release will be primarily filmed in Tupper Lake this fall, and local leaders are welcoming the venture with open arms.
Gregory Orr, the film's writer, director and producer, has over two decades of experience in the film industry, most notably as a cinematographer on James Cameron's Oscar-winning 1989 film "The Abyss." Since then, he has produced a handful of documentaries that have appeared on national television as well as a successful short fiction film.
"I've been waiting to make a feature film for a number of years, and I wrote a number of scripts," said Orr, "but it's "Recreator" that has received the greatest interest from financiers and other movie makers."
Orr, who resides in New York City, first visited the Adirondacks when he stayed at Rainbow Lake last year. When time came to decide on a location to shoot his latest film, the Tri-Lakes region came to mind.
"In my research, I found both the lake and the camp we're planning to use as having a great combination of scenic beauty and practical access so important to a film production," said Orr. "There's also cell service in the area, which is a real boon."
Filming for "Recreator" will take place in Tupper Lake for five weeks, beginning in October. Negotiations are still ongoing for some specific locations, but Orr said the production will be visible in town for at least one day.
"Everyone has been both hospitable and helpful in trying to make our visit work," said Orr. "I'm delighted with the mayor, the supervisor and the many local business people who have tried to accommodate our many needs."
"Recreator" tells the story of three teenagers on a camping trip who stumble on the abandoned secret laboratory of a mysterious scientist. It is there that they accidently trigger an experiment that creates duplicates of each of them. The clones have enhanced physical abilities and seek to trap the teens, who must outsmart the clones to avoid being replaced.
Orr said the film is a sci-fi thriller in the tradition of the classic film "Invasion of the Body Snatchers," and the more recent movie, "Disturbia." Targeted mainly at teens and young people, it will likely end up with a PG-13 rating.
"Our film is powered more by suspense than gore," said Orr, "and features three very likeable lead characters whom you don't want to see die."
The films's producers held auditions in New York City and are in the process of finalizing the cast list. Orr said there will be a few actors with recognizable names and faces as well as some young rising stars.
As is the case with many films during the economic downturn, "Recreator" is modestly budgeted, Orr said. He did not divulge any exact numbers, but described the production costs as "about the price of Will Smith's makeup trailer, plus snacks."
Still, the shooting of the film should have a positive effect on local business. Orr noted that his 40-person film crew will be staying in local motels and frequenting local restaurants and stores. In addition, they will need to hire a number of construction workers and production assistants locally.
The film is anticipated to release within the next two years. In the meantime, Orr stressed that he and his film crew are happy to be filming in the Adirondacks.
"While we understand the appeal of hosting a movie crew, I hope you can appreciate how wonderful we find the area, especially in the fall," he said. "It's a real treat; an escape from downstate that we are all looking forward to."