It's Happening: JCFilms Coming Back to Town to Shoot "A Promise to Astrid;" Looking for Locals to Cast in the Faith-Based Film

By Julie Perine on July 22, 2018 via Connect-Bridgeport.com

Earlier this summer, I wrote about our hometown’s brush with fame when Dean Cain and JCFilms visited and shot some scenes for the Hallmark movie, “Megan’s Christmas Miracle.” At that time, Jason Campbell, founder/president of the faith-based film company, told me he would return to Bridgeport to shoot a movie in its entirety.
 
That is going to happen sooner than later and he’s looking for locals to serve as actors and extras.
 
“A Promise to Astrid” will be filmed in our city beginning Sept. 15 and Campbell is casting 40 folks of all ages to be in front of the camera. Some are speaking roles.
 
“This film is unique in that it has a lot of speaking parts so that’s kind of cool,” he said. “It’s a multi-story-type film with several stories going on at the same time so those types of scripts need more people. There are a lot of players, including those who come in for one day and deliver one or two lines. Being part of a film is exciting and we want to see a lot of these people come from the local area if we can.”
 
The movie is based on the best-selling book of the same name by Michael K. Tourville which loosely tells a true story. Like JCFilms, the book publishing company is faith-based and has a goal, Campbell said, of turning four of its books into feature films over the next several years. This is the first and everything about the story brought Bridgeport to mind, he said.
 
“It’s interesting. I flew up to Massachusetts and met with some guys, one who wrote the book and he took me to all the different places where Astrid lived and the church she attended. It was just like Bridgeport,” Campbell said. “She walked everywhere, just like you can in Bridgeport, to the library, to church and the grocery store. The town had the same feel.”
 
Campbell has been working with Lisa Lang, Bridgeport business owner and wife to Mayor Andy Lang. She has suggested some filming locations.
 
“We’ll be filming all over the place. We’ve got 36 different locations, from a car dealership to a funeral home, church and convenience stores,” he said.
 
Also included are two privately-owned homes which, in the movie, will be the homes of Astrid and the neighbor who tells the story.
 
Campbell laid out that storyline, which revolves around Astrid, of Norwegian descent, a mix between Mary Poppins and Queen Elizabeth, on the proper side, and a no-nonsense type of woman.
 
“Astrid is a lady of Norwegian descent, who was extremely wealthy, but no one knew it. She moved into this small community with her husband and they had no children of their own. She doesn’t really fit into the community, but she has a heart for people and helps everyone she encounters. Through random acts of kindness, she changed the community. Everything she did for people was based on the promise that they would never tell anyone or say anything about her generosity or kindness. It wasn’t just about money, but several things he did to help people. It wasn’t until she passed away that people started talking about the things that happened in their lives because one lady.”
 
As of now, that lead role is up for grabs. The movie stars Dean Cain (“Lois &  Clark: The New Adventures of Superman,” “Bigfoot Bounty Hunter,” “Beverly Hills 90210,” Ripley’s Believe it Or Not” and hundreds of feature films)  who has been cast in the role of the preacher. In the scene where he preaches, Campbell would like the church to be full of locals. Cain will be in town to shoot his scenes in mid-October and during that time, a premier will be held for “Megan’s Christmas Miracle,” which will be released before the holidays.
 
Also cast in “A Promise for Astrid” is Tim Goodwin, an actor with many films to his credit, including “Megan’s Christmas Miracle.” Goodwin has also appeared in a number of TV shows, including “The Middle,” Mom,” “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” and many others.
 
“Right now, those are the two main characters and we’re putting feelers out for others,” Campbell said. “There will be some larger names doing cameo appearances. We’re still in the real preliminary stages.”
 
JCFilms will be shooting in Bridgeport intermittently over the course of a few months.
 
“The duration of the film goes through summer, fall, winter and spring so we need to cover (conditions of) all the seasons. If we start in September, we’ll get the sunlight and we’ll film in October and whenever the first snow hits the ground,” Campbell said.
Enthusiasm is building for the projects with lots of locals already interested in being part of the film. And Campbell loves that, just as he loves Bridgeport, he said.
 
“We really need people of all ages. Several scenes include large groups of people – 50 to 60 people standing in as extras,” Campbell said. “It’s very diverse, but not really a lot of teenagers. We do need a lot of infants and small children, as well as older folks.”
 
Live auditions will not be held. Those interested in submitting pre-taped monologues, head shots should visit jcfilms.org. Information is in the top right corner of the Web site. Campbell will be communicating additional details through me here on Connect-Bridgeport.
 
Break a leg!
 
Editor's Note: Pictured from top are Jason Campbell, Dean Cain and Katherine Shaw during the mid-June 2018 shooting of "Megan's Christmas Miracle," Timothy Goodwin and Campbell/Cain during filming. 
 
Julie Perine can be reached at 304-848-7200 ext. 2 or julie@connect-bridgeport.com. Read about the filming of "Megan's Christmas Miracle" in Bridgeport HERE and my behind-the-scenes blog HERE.



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