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Posted: May 23, 2012 REFLECTIONS ON SHOOTING THE CHRISTMAS HEART IN WINNIPEG
Source: The Plain Dealer
The following article about the shooting of the OSM member Julijette Inc. co-produced The Christmas Heart was written by the film's writer, Michael Heaton, and originally was published online in The Plain Dealer on May 19, 2012.
The movie crew for "The Christmas Heart" was battling what I like to call a "lack of elements."
"The Christmas Heart" is the movie I wrote for the Hallmark Channel. Starring Teri Polo and Tess Harper, the movie will air this holiday season, on a date to be determined. The story is about a family in Lakewood whose 17-year-old son has a cardiac episode and needs a heart transplant a week before Christmas.
The film was shot in Winnipeg, Canada, in March.
Winnipeg is in the central Canadian province of Manitoba. Go to North Dakota and then keep going north. Not far across the border is the city of Winnipeg. Great place. A charming, tough little town. Home of the Slurpee and the early folk music of Neil Young.
It reminded me of Youngstown. A little battered by hard times but unbowed and poised for a comeback. The point of shooting the movie there was that it promised snow.
Tons and tons of frosty Canadian white. The big fluffy stuff. Cold and frozen. The movie requires it. It climaxes with a lake-effect storm on Christmas Eve and a medical team in a plane delivering a heart for a boy at the Cleveland Clinic.
But the plane gets lost in a storm. So there needs to be tons of snow. On the ground. In the air. Storm-of-the-century type snow and high winds.
The week before I left to visit the set, I asked my musician friends about Winnipeg. They have a folk music festival there. Alex Bevan had been there. He told me it was often cold until about July. He told me to be careful about the cold.
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