This last year found West Michigan booming with hopeful anticipation. With local filming of several movie productions in the works, citizens seemed positive about the growing interest in Michigan’s great potential. We hoped it would affect the economy more than anything.
My personal experience happened on a summer day. I was at my house late morning when Daniel Culpepper knocked on my door and handed me a business card. He introduced himself as a production assistant for West Michigan Film Office out of Grand Rapids. “We’re looking for a home like yours to feature in an upcoming film,” he explained. He asked permission to photograph the grounds, including the red barn (big-selling point), and the layout of the house. I smiled and apologized for the typical mess, and let him take the photos. Although my house was not ultimately selected to be used in the movie “Touchback,” the possibility inspired and encouraged me. (The movie stars Brian Presley, Kurt Russell, and Melanie Lynskey, and is set to release sometime in 2011.)
Amber Chase, a student from Olivet College, was approached around the same time by Valerio Zanoli to submit a song for his 2011 movie “All You Can Dream.” He heard her sing at a Dare To Dream event, and her original song, “Just a Dream,” fit the bill as “exactly what he was looking for.” Amber, laughing, describes the moment: “At first I didn’t know how to react. I kept hugging him.” She said that in the days after meeting Zanoli, she had to revisit the song she’d written to do “a little tweaking.” Ultimately she found herself reconnecting with the original inspiration which helped birth the song. “It pushed me to grow as an artist,” she said. Amber also said that all the people she met through this experience were very nice.
The general consensus is that we Michiganders like the possibilities floating around our great state. It’s exciting to think we could be part of recorded art, and ultimately entertainment history. While we understand the search for specific homes and songs may not conclude with us, people like Amber and I have come away from the experience with a renewed sense of passion and belief in possibilities. It’s interesting how individuals begin moving mountains of economic hardship one scoop of sand at a time once the seed of hope gets planted. In fact, that particular planted seed is worth a million West-Michigan productions if it helps restore faith in our great state.
Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Join the Yahoo! Contributor Network to start publishing your own articles.