By Jan Black
Huntersville resident Gary Wheeler recently shared what it was like filming his UP network movie, “Saving Westbrook High” in Davidson. The film was entitled “Teachers” until recently.
Wheeler, president of North Carolina-based Level Path Productions, has expressed interest in screening the film in late September at Our Towns Cinemas before it airs on the UP network on Oct. 19.
Why is it so hard to decide on the name of the movie?
The final name of the film is “Saving Westbrook High.” The script was always called “Teachers,” but there is an 80’s movie starring Nick Nolte with the same name. As a film, this story was always about more than just the teachers, it was about a community banding together to save their school. So this name feels more appropriate.
Did Davidson turn out to be a good site for this movie?
Davidson turned out to be a great site for the film. The people were great. We shot the entire film within five blocks and everyone was really nice. Davidson is a very picturesque, welcoming setting, and I think the film will pay tribute to that.
What were a few of your favorite moments during shooting?
For me, it is always about how harmonious and peaceful everyone works together. This was one of the easiest shoots I've ever been on, and it will show in the final product. The cast really got along great and so did the crew. I think beyond that, this one will go down in the books for me as the greatest group of extras we've had on a film. Which is quite amazing because they were mostly teenagers! They were all also local Lake Norman-area kids, so I'm even more proud of how our community came out.
What will your next film be?
Our next film is “Mountaintop.” It is based on a Robert Whitlow novel and will be shot in Boone soon. We will probably have a whole new group of extras but anyone from this film is welcome to make the trip up the mountain.