LANSING – The Michigan Film Office announced today the feature film Beside Still Waters has been approved for a film incentive from the state. The project is set in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and tells the story of a man redefining his outlook on life after the death of his parents. It is expected to shoot in Traverse City and metro Detroit.
“Beside Still Waters will showcase Michigan’s natural beauty and highlight a wide range of locations across the state,” said Carrie Jones, director of the Michigan Film Office. “We are excited to be approving our first project of the year as we move forward in our efforts to promote and strengthen Michigan’s talented film industry.”
Beside Still Waters was awarded an incentive of $79,324 on $276,281 of projected in-state expenditures. This is the first approval made utilizing the $25 million allocation for Fiscal Year 2012. The project is expected to hire 34 Michigan workers with a full time equivalent of 1.5 jobs.
In the film, a young romantic named Daniel Thatcher invites a group of estranged high school friends to his summer home in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. They enjoy one last weekend in the home where they spent their childhood summers, rekindling old friendships and creating new memories.
The film will be directed by Chris Lowell, who has been cast in films including Up in the Air, The Help and AWOL. Jason Potash, a native of Detroit, is producing alongside Paul Finkel and Mo Narang.
“It is a thrill for me to bring this film to my home state,” Potash said. “We look forward to coming back to our roots to make a film about a Michigan summer, and actually shoot it in Michigan.”
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) Film Review Committee, comprised of senior MEDC staff including the Michigan Film Commissioner, reviews all completed applications.
Using the statute to guide approval decisions, preference is given to projects that best meet the following criteria:
1. The production is financially viable.
2. Utilization of existing infrastructure (studios, post-production facilities, equipment rental, etc.).
3. The number and wage levels of direct jobs for Michigan residents created by a production.
4. Ability to show Michigan in a positive light and promote the state as a tourist destination.
5. Magnitude of estimated expenditures in Michigan.
The Michigan Film Office was created in 1979 to assist and attract incoming production companies and promote the growth of Michigan’s own film industry. The Film Office also administers the incentive program for film, television and other digital media production in Michigan.