Local filmmakers premiere trilogy of western movies

Japhy Hunt, Matty Helmer, and Mike Helmer, envisioned a single western themed feature film

They’ve spent the last year and a half filming hours of footage, driving from location to location, and developing characters to create their very own copyright free feature film. For Invermere locals, Japhy Hunt, Matty Helmer, and Mike Helmer, their vision of a single western themed feature film blossomed into a trilogy of movies that they’ll debut for the first time tonight (Thursday, September 21st).

“The reason we had to film it all at the same time, three films at the same time, is because it’s one big story comprised of three points of view so you can’t really do them separately,” said Mr. Hunt. “A lot of the time the characters are intertwining with each other’s lives.”

In total the three movies equal six hours of screen time with the trio having put in countless numbers of hours into the planning, production, and editing of the films. With each having a hand in filming and acting out 15 plus character roles, the trio is looking forward to presenting their films to the community.

“With having to play multiple characters we’ve actually learned to effectively do a bit of body doubling, camera angles that make it work,” said Mr. Hunt.

Throughout the films, the audience will be taken to various locations throughout the Columbia Valley including the Toby Benches, Brisco Falls, and Fort Steele that make up the movie’s community of Fort Goldie. They even managed to weave in footage from Scotland, Australia, and Cuba, just to name a few of their international locations.

The first movie, titled Oakely Doakely, features Matty Helmer as the up and coming Sheriff of Fort Goldie. The next two films follow different characters.

“The second film is comprised of quirky selfish bandits played by the both of us as well and they kind of just make their way through the crossfire of all the bigger situations that they can’t explain and then the third movie is about a recently hired deputy of Fort Goldie who through a miraculous event assumes the life of a bounty hunter and tries to find the truth in a lot of the secrecy in the Valley,” said Mr. Hunt.

Matty Helmer adding that while you can watch only one of the films and be entertained, to be fully satisfied by the story– to get the full picture – the viewer should watch all three.

“It’s like eating a really really good piece of bread, like a delicious artisan bread. It’s really good on its own but it’s missing something. So the second movie would add some meat and cheese so it adds something to it but it’s still missing something and so the last part would be the condiments and the other piece of bread and you have a full sandwich and nothing’s missing,” said Mr. Helmer.

Sticking with the idea to be completely copyright free, Mr. Hunt and the Helmer brothers decided to create the soundtrack for the film all themselves.

“It was made from scratch. We created sounds from different objects to achieve the more eery themes and then we just combined our instrumental abilities to create the main more musical themes,” said Mr. Hunt.

The three-part series of films with a suggested rating of 14 A will be shown in the David Thompson Secondary School theatre, starting Thursday, September 21st. The second movie will be shown Saturday, September 23rd and the trilogy finale will be shown Sunday, September 24th. Doors openat 6:30 p.m., with the movie starting at 7 p.m. Admission for the movies is by donation for the Red Cross, with a portion of the proceeds going to those affected by the B.C. wildfires.

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