(PCM) When Jody Quigley signed on to play the leading man in “Apparition,” a supernatural thriller set in rural Pennsylvania, he knew he would enjoy the acting challenge, but he honestly had no idea how far the film’s reach would extend.
Now, the movie produced by his father’s company, Thundersmoke Media, and starring an impressive cast and director, has garnered nine awards at festivals around the world, is headed to the acclaimed Toronto International Film Festival this fall, and will help open the 7th Annual New Hope Film Festival.
Highlighting the New Hope Film Festival, as one of 89 films from 11 countries, “Apparition,” a riveting movie, is showing at the New Hope Arts Center, 2 Stockton Avenue, New Hope,PA., on Saturday, July 23, at 5:30 p.m.
Picturesque New Hope has attracted, and been home to many talented producers, screenwriters, actors, playwrights, and performance art enthusiasts. The village is centrally located less than an hour from Philadelphia and 90 minutes from New York.
Many of the films are U.S. and world premieres. Countries represented include the USA, Italy, Canada, Turkey, India, Australia, Switzerland, Ukraine, UK, Kuwait and Brazil. Filmmakers from around the country and abroad will attend the screenings. There will be opportunities to meet filmmakers at the question and answer sessions following the films.
“People should come out because we have one of the best independent film lineups in the world, and that’s not only my opinion” explained Doug Whipple, the director of NHFF. “We hear it all the time from filmmakers who have traveled the festival circuit.”
For NHFF tickets please go to: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2552734.
Watch the “Apparition” trailer here:
The movie focuses on Doug, (Jody Quigley), and Lori, (Katrina Law), his beautiful fiancée, who buy an isolated and dilapidated farmhouse to renovate with visions of a happy fairytale life together. But something goes terribly wrong after Lori is killed in a car accident. Doug has no inkling that his fixer upper is filled with a cadre of haunted secrets.
This nightmarish premise of “Apparition” and the unusual love triangle involved, expertly explores the difficult themes of love, death, and the fragility of the mind.
“I am thrilled with the attention “Apparition” has received,” said Jody Quigley, 36, of Doylestown, Pennsylvania. “It’s sort of like a love story in a weird way. It is intriguing and a little more off the beaten path. Instead of the characters getting slashed to death, this is a mind thriller. This movie is definitely messing with your head, and in some scenes, what I would call uber-creepy.”
Quigley, who has won four acting awards for the film, has also starred in the movies, “Wicked Blood,” “Hijacked,” “In the Bag,” and “Breaking Wind.”
He fondly remembers making the movie several years ago and bonding with his co-stars: Katrina Law “Spartacus” and “Arrow,” Lily Bordan (“The Martian” and “Cherry,” and Tom Roy (“12 Monkeys”), and his director, Quinn Saunders, best known for his work on TV’s “Big Brother,” and the film, “Cherry.”
“Apparition” is the end result of hard work done by the cast and crew on a tight budget and a grueling 18-day film schedule in May 2013. Combining this with accomplished local talent, and extensive local resources, the movie is riveting.
The film offers many recognizable locations: Scenes were shot in Hatboro at the Village Hardware store, the Stroker Roadhouse, a Hatboro watering hole, and, of course, the historic Penrose Strawbridge House in Horsham’s Graeme Park, which sits in the middle of 357 acres and is part of a national Historic Land Trust, located in Montgomery County.
Peter Choate, executive director of the Horsham Preservation and Historical Association, lives in the house with his wife, Margaret, and the couple agreed to move out for six weeks during the filming to stay with a local friend.
So is the house haunted. Or not? “Some say it is, and some say it isn’t,” replied Choate. “We’ve had three groups of paranormal investigators come through. My wife and I have lived here for 10 years and we have never seen any incident of a ghost except one unusual occurrence.”
It is well-documented that the owner of the home, Margaret Strawbridge, abhorred smoking and forbade anyone from lighting tobacco in the home. Choate recalled in great detail the day he felt like having a cigar and lit up. “I was sitting at my computer upstairs smoking that cigar and I felt a double tap on my shoulder,” he said. “I turned around and no one was there. I put it out and never smoked in the house again”
Producer and entrepreneur Guy Quigley, who is also Jody’s proud father, said that the film had an arduous 18-day shooting schedule in several Bucks and Montgomery County locations. He is pleased that the movie has garnered nine recent film awards around the globe and is clearly an audience favorite.
“People are finding this to be a highly intriguing movie. It is a thriller with an extremely interesting psychological element,” Guy explained. “Some people like the more Hitchcock feel as opposed to the blood and gore.”
During a recent chat with Quinn Saunders, 40, of Lumberton, N.J. the award-winning director of “Apparition,” expressed the importance of the house to the film. “Once we located it, we re-wrote the script for this house,” Saunders explained. “This house is another leading character in the script – it was crucial for this film.”
Q: Quinn, please talk about Apparition’s journey from Bucks and Montgomery Counties in Pennsylvania, to film festival around the globe.
Quinn Saunders: It’s incredibly gratifying to know that Apparition has been embraced and enjoyed by so many people across the world.
Q: Why do you think the movie has captured the imagination of its audiences far and wide?
QS: I think at its core, Apparition is incredibly relatable to anyone who has experienced substantial loss in their life; and it doesn’t hurt that it has some good scares in it as well.
Q: What are your fondest memories of making the movie?
QS: It was wonderful getting to make a movie so close to where I grew up, but my favorite part was working with all of the talented actors and a great crew of creative people.
Q: Have you kept in touch with Jody and Guy Quigley?
QS: Of course, we shared a great experience making the movie and we are partners in bringing it to the world.
Q: Have you worked with any of the cast members since Apparition?
QS: No, but I would love to work with all of them again.
Q: What project are you currently involved in?
QS: My partner and I are currently putting together a project called Hitman that has Adam Beach (“Suicide Squad” and “Flags of Our Fathers”) attached as the star. It’s an amazing action film with Adam as a U.S. Special Forces veteran who winds up as a hit-man for Mexican drug gangs down on the border. He has a change of heart after he is wounded in a gunfight and recovers on a Native American reservation. While there, he falls in love and decides to defend the Reservation against the Mexican drug gangs that are trying to use it as their base of operations.
Guy Quigley, the film’s producer, also recently talked about the film’s global reach and being proud that “Apparition” has circled back to his home-town roots.
Q: What is your reaction to all of the awards that your son, Jody, and the film have received?
Guy Quigley: The first award was from the Indie Film Festival 2015, Switzerland, where Jody Quigley was awarded “Best actor in a leading role.” This was somewhat inspiring, which led me to enter several other Festivals. Since then we have won a total of nine winning awards, four of which were awards Jody received. We have a further four nominations, results yet to be known and screenings to come at the New Hope Film Festival and the Peachtree Village International Film Festival.
Q: Why do you feel audiences continue to respond so well to Apparition?
GQ: I believe it may have to do with the fact that “Apparition” is more of a psychological thriller as opposed to horror. Some people like the more Hitchcock feel than blood and gore.
Q: What are your thoughts about the film being at the New Hope Film Festival?
GQ: We were really delighted to hear that we were an official selection in the NHFF. The fact is that the entire movie was shot in Bucks County is good for all movie makers trying to complete films locally and a golden opportunity to expose the finished work.
Q: Why do you encourage movie buffs to come to the festival?
GQ: It is really simple these days to stream a movie from various websites, however, to really appreciate any movie, the best place to see is on a big screen with 5.1 Dolby stereo. So I encourage everyone to please come out.
“Apparition” is available for streaming and on DVD at Amazon.com
Check out “Apparition” on Facebook.
For further information about the New Hope Film Festival, call: 1-800-838-3006 or go to: http://www.newhopefilmfestival.com/