“The Spring” will be shot in the summer of 2023 and is written and directed by local filmmaker Thomas Smugala.
Courtesy of Perry County Heritage Tourism
PERRYVILLE, Mo. — Officials in Perryville, Mo., are linking their economic development wagon to film production, with a movie already slated for release next year.
Thomas Smugala, writer and director of “The Spring,” which will be filmed in the area in the summer of 2023, and members of the City of Perryville helped create the Film-friendly Perryville website – www.filmfriendlyperryville.com – to encourage other low-budget producers to shoot in the city.
“With its rich German farming heritage and many wonderful locations to shoot, Perryville can help you make your $500,000 budget look like a $5,000,000 budget – a producer’s dream come true,” indicates the website. “The caves, forests, lakes, rivers, industrial parks, historic buildings, town square, farms and barns, parks and residences, bars, restaurants and shops and resources filming…make Perryville a great place to film.”
Smugala directed other films, such as “The Apocalypse and the Beauty Queen” and “Interviewing Monsters and Bigfoot”, both of which were filmed in the region, notably in Cape Girardeau.
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“The Spring” is a supernatural thriller set in 1870 and modern-day Missouri, and it tackles topics such as race, vanity and slavery. Smugala said he was excited to start filming.
“There were a few scripts that were sold in 2008, and I’m sitting on this one, waiting,” Smugala said. “It’s one I’ve always wanted to do, and now we’re in a really good position thanks to the support of all the local towns, a good support team and cast. I want everyone to know that we are different from other bands and we are totally open to everyone, and anyone who wants to get involved, just send us an email and we try to find everyone a place in the effort. “
Film-friendly Perryville hosts open casting calls on weekends and can be reached on its website or Facebook page.
Trish Erzfeld, director of Perry County Tourism, said shooting low- and high-budget movies in the area would improve the town.
“The money the film crews would spend while in Perryville will create more jobs, boost the economy, and most importantly, make Perryville a richer and more interesting place to visit and live,” Erzfeld said.
Perryville is also home to the 573 International Film Festival, taking place October 12-14 this year. Admission is free and the festival showcases over 60 films from around the world. The film festival is sponsored by the City of Perryville, Film-friendly Perryville and 573 Magazine.