“Northern Borders” is Craven’s fourth and final film based on a novel by Howard Frank Mosher. It is being produced through an innovative partnership between Marlboro College and Craven’s nonprofit film and performing arts company, Kingdom County Productions. Fifteen professionals will collaborate with 24 students and eight recent post-grads from 12 colleges, including Marlboro, Wellesley, Mount Holyoke, Boston University, Smith, George Washington, Connecticut College, Wheaton, Vassar, Cornell, Champlain College, and the University of Connecticut.
These students are now halfway through an intensive spring semester at Marlboro, where they have, so far, prepared for production and taken film studies, screenwriting, and literature classes related to story, themes, and characters in the Mosher story. They will now turn their attention full time to the work of production, alongside the professionals.
“Northern Borders” tells the story of 10 year-old Austen, who is sent to live with his grandparents whose contentious relationship is called “the Forty Years War.” The film was previously in development by Academy Award-winning producer Jake Eberts (“Dances with Wolves,” “Gandhi”) for Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward.
“Like Mosher’s other stories, ‘Northern Borders’ is deeply rooted in character and place, a kind of Vermont western that creates an enchanted and rough-hewn frontier world,” said Craven. “In it, family mysteries run deep and an older generation resists change.”
Chip Hourihan, producer of the Oscar-nominated 2008 film, “Frozen River,” is leading the production. Marlboro College alumnus Todd Enright is executive producer. Seven other Marlboro alumni will work in positions ranging from director of photography, producer, and assistant director to carpenter and assistant camera. Students and recent post-grads will play leading roles as costume designer, script supervisor, second assistant director, production coordinator, still photographer, art department supervisor, locations manager, second assistant camera, and more. Students are also managing publicity, fundraising, and outreach for community support.
“More than for any film I’ve made, ‘Northern Borders’ depends on essential partnerships,” said Craven, “between mentors and students, participating colleges, and the local community. Our budget is very tight and people are coming forward with vital and generous contributions of cash, labor, clothing, food, art supplies, loaned props, period cars, and much more. This is a style of filmmaking that resembles a barn raising. Many people are pitching in.”
To that end, a “Northern Borders” public fundraising event is scheduled in April, to help generate needed support for the project. Dern, Mosher, Craven, and assorted other cast and crew will attend. The event will be held on Monday, April 9, from 6:30 to 8:30, pm at the Main Street Landing Performing Arts Center in Burlington.
For more information contact Linda Little at (802) 357-4616 or Linda@KingdomCounty.com. For more information about “Northern Borders” or to offer support contact Craven at email@example.com.