[Below is the text from the official press kit for the movie "Jack Weyland's Charly," as it was found on the official movie website on 23 September 2002, 4 days before the theatrical release of the movie.]
An Excel Entertainment Group Release
BASED ON THE BEST-SELLING NOVEL BY JACK WEYLAND
This Film is Rated PG by the MPAA
OPENS SEPTEMBER 27
(IN UTAH AND SOUTHEASTERN IDAHO)
OPENS OCTOBER 11
(IN BOISE, PHOENIX AND TUSCON)
Mary Jane Jones
Media Relations, Excel Entertainment Group
CHARLY captured the hearts and imaginations of a generation when it was first published in 1980. The novel quickly became a word of mouth phenomenon as readers devoured the dramatic story of love, loss and hope.
Over tweny years later, the beloved tale of Sam and Charly's turbulent relationship is being brought to the big screen. Jack Weyland's CHARLY captures the spirit and energy of the book while updating the setting and adding new dimension to the characters we fell in love with so many years ago.
Real love stories have no ending...
Sam Roberts thinks he has all the answers: the purpose of life, the meaning of love, the plan fo a perfect future. Until Charly walks into his life.
As opposite as Salt Lake City and New York City, Sam and Charly are thrown together by circumstances and repelled by differences. he's scheduled and idealistic. She's spontaneous and cynical. He's guarded and practical. She's open and mischievous. He's a Mormon. She isn't.
Their differences spark interest, however, as Charly finds depth in Sam's idealism and Sam seeks the vibrancy of Charly's love for life.
But all is not smooth in the Rockies as their relationship accelerates -- cultural differences, family issues, former loves and life-altering challenges threaten to take away what they find together.
Adapted from jack Weyland's best-selling novel Charly, the film is sometimes light-hearted, sometimes soul-searching, and always a thoughtful journel of love, of laughter and of hope.
|Heather Beers||Charlene "Charly" Riley|
|Gary Neilson||Edward Riley|
|Lisa McCammon||Claire Riley|
|Jackie Winterrose-Fullerup||Ena Riley|
|Jeremy Elliott||Sam Roberts|
|Randy King||Frank Roberts|
|Diana Dunkley||JoEllen Roberts|
|Adam Johnson||Mark Randolph|
|Director||Adam Thomas Anderegg|
|Producer||Lance C. Williams|
|Associate Producer||Tip Boxell|
|Executive Producer||Herbert Christensen|
|Screenplay||Janine Whetton Gilbert
(Based on the novel by Jack Weyland)
|Director of Photography||Bengt Jan Jonsson|
|Editor||M. William Merrill|
|Production Designer||Kee Miller|
|Sound||Paul Maritsas and Jeff Kimball|
|Unit Production Manager||Russ Kendall|
Here, the director and producers of Jack Weyland's CHARLY offer their first-hand account of what it was like behind the scenes of the film. From the initial idea to story development to filming and post-production, get a sneak peek into what went into the making of Jack Weyland's CHARLY.
Falling in Love with Charly...
Kaleidoscope Pictures hired screenwriter Janine Whetten Gilbert as soon as we bought the rights in 1996. We had worked with Janine before; she had a reputation as a solid writer, and it didn't hurt that she was also an English professor. With Janine's help, the screenplay went into development.
The main evolutions were in transforming the novel's struture to a movie's three-act dramatic structure -- without losing the spirit of the story. That was hard to do, because there were thematic elements done really well in the book that in the end the script couldn't include. Five years later, the script was ready, and Kaleidoscope Pictures joined forces with Focused Light Films to begin production of the film.
Choosing the Creative Team...
One thing we didn't know at the outset was whom we would cast. While we felt confident in the abilities of Utah actors, we were prepared to go anywhere to find the right cast. We looked at actors in L.A. and Utah, but ended up with a mostly Utah ensemble.
Helping oversee auditioning was associate producer, Tip Boxell. It took two months, which is a relatively long casting process, but we were determined to find the right actors for each role. We found several good actors to play Sam, but then we auditioned Heather Beers for Charly, and we could see she could take the film in a new direction. None of our candidates for Sam had the right look when paired with Heather, so the search for him was on again -- and wasn't over until just before the shoot was scheduled to begin. When we found Jeremy Elliott, we were intrigued -- he played Sam with more complexity than we had seen in other actors.
What Jeremy and Heather also brought to the film were talent and a depth of life experience. They were actors who looked young but had worked professionally and had families of their own. They were able to draw on that and bring a level of realism to their roles. They also added new dimensinos to their characters we hadn't anticipated. We didn't end up with the Charly and Sam we'd imagined -- we ended up with better.
After finalizing principal characters, we found actors to complement the family roles. Jackie Winterrose-Fillerup [a.k.a., Jackie Winterrose-Fullmer], who plays Ena, was one of those last-minute miracle-finds -- she was cast the day we held our first read-through of the script.
Lights, Camera, Action...
One of the most exciting days in the filming process was actually the first read-through with the cast. We walked in, and everybody was sitting around the table. We said, "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Charly,' and everyone started cheering spontaneously. It was fun to start talking character development, to see what the cast dynamic was like.
When we began filming, we specifically started in the middle of the story. Filmmakers do that to give the cast and crew time to gel -- it's less noticeable once you get into the editing room.
We were pleased with how quickly everyone got into a rhythm, though; it was a cohesive team. Adam and Bengt would storyboard scenes, actors would block a few times before shooting, and then we'd generally get what we wanted in just a few takes. There were a couple scenes that ate up more film than we'd like, but those were the moments that provided comic relief.
Despite the occasional panics, like when a scheduled location fell through the night before or the Ferris Wheel at Liberty Park malfunctioned, the shoot went fairly smoothly. Principal shooting was done in 20 days, and it was sad good-bye to everyone when we wrapped.
There were the occasional practical jokes ont he set, the kind that break up long shoots and leave a few deserving people feeling perfectly embarrassed.
There was also the time when we were shooting the lake scene -- the one when Charly drops Sam's PDA in the lake. We didn't have the prop ready for the close-up, so Micah lent his own PDA. We had crewmembers catching the PDA on a 4-foot square screen and stretched under Heather Beers' hand, just below the camera. On one of the takes, things didn't line up, and Heather dropped Micah's PDA right into the lake. She screamed and several people dove for it as the crew bust into laughter. Micah eventually got a new PDA, courtesy of the film.
Because we shot in September, we all experienced the 9-11 crisis together. One of our crewmembes had a father who worked in the Pentagon, and for several hours we didn't know if he had survived. Thankfully, he did. The whole set seemed to band together. We talked, we prayed. Everyone jumped in and moved forward with a feeling of reverence for how important life was; it was always at the forefront of everyone's mind. Our hearts go out to all those who lost loved ones in the crisis.
That's a Wrap...
Technology is changing post-production for filmmakers. We've been able to cut the whole film on a Mac Titanium PowerBook. It's actually improved the storytelling process to be able to manipulate things on a portable laptop before ever hitting the traditional film-cutting phase. We've been working with a great team, like Aaron Merrill on music. Aaron is an award-winning composer who also happens to be Micah's brother.
Overall, it's been amazing to watch the evolution of the film from start to finish. We've seen Charly begin as a 1980 novel and go through: dozens of script revisions; dynamic, synergistic development in front of the camera; the editing room's incessant whittling; music scoring; last-minute changes and touch-ups; and now, it is a major motion picture. It's thrilling. It's exhausting. It's exhilarating. We appreciate all who collaborated on the film, and we're excited to share the warmth, depth and joy of Jack Weyland's CHARLY with everone.
About the Cast...
HEATHER BEERS' (CHARLY) film career began on stage. Actually, behind the stage, under the seats and atop the props. Her mother was an accomplished community theater director in Southern California, and her playground was often found the [sic] recesses of a theater. Her youth was filled with leading and supporting theatrical roles, including several that earned her regional amateur theater awards.
Graduating in English from the University of Utah, Heather traded the stage for the public relations arena, where she spent five years at a Salt Lake City-based advertising and public relations agency. Within a few years, acting gnawed its way into her life again, and she has appeared on USA Network's Cover Me, the independent film Fortune Cookie (and several national television commercials. Her other professional pursuits include freelance writing for Utah Business Magazine, Salt Lake Magazine, Utah Style + Design and copywriting for several advertising agencies in Utah and California.
Heather most enjoys spending time with her husband and their young sons.
JEREMY ELLIOTT (Sam) has proven himself an accomplished leading man, from his early starring roles in regional theater to his lead role in The Testaments of One Fold and One Shepherd with Academy Award-winning director Keith Merrill [sic; should be: Kieth Merrill]. Jeremy trained on scholarship at Brigham Young University in its acclaimed Theater and Media Arts Department, where he received many awards, including the national Irene Ryan Award for Best Scene Partner.
Since earning his degree, Jeremy has been acting professionally, appearing in numerous films and television productions. His film credits include: the lead in Out of Step, by Vision Star Entertainment (a feature film that he also c-wrote [sic]; appearances in Brigham City, a Zion Films Production directed by Richard Dutcher; The Singles Ward, a Halestorm Production; and the Showtime original movie Just a Dream, directed by Danny GLover. His TV work also includes appearances in the Sci-Fi Network mini-series Firestarter Rekindled; CBS's Promised Land; USA Network's Cover Me and Pacific Blue; Perfect Town Perfect Murder (the Jean Benet Ramsey story); Beyond the Prairie (the true story of Laura Ingalls Wilder); and several appearances on CBS's Touched by an Angel.
Along with being an accomplished actor, Jeremy is also a well-trained singer and songwriter. Several of his songs are featured in Out of Step and Charly. Jeremy and his wife Wendy Gardiner, also an accomplished actor, recently welcomed a beautiful son, Gabriel, to their family.
About the Filmmakers...
As a director, editor and producer, ADAM ANDEREGG (Director) has learned well the art of bringing together disparate elements to create a beautiful and complete work of art. Charly is his feature film directorial debut.
After earning a BFA in film directing at Brigham Young University, Adam was trained and mentored by Academy Award-winning producer/director Sterling Van Wagenen (Trip to Bountiful, Alan and Naomi) and directors Tim van Patton, Victor Lobi and Sandor Stern (Touched By an Angel, Promised Land). Through their influence, Adam has developed a unique, fresh and compelling directing style.
His credits also include assistant editor for over 70 episodes of CBS's Touched By an Angel and Promised Land. He has produced What Matters Most (Franklin Covey) and other corporate films. Adam has also directed the short films Julie and Phillip (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), The Touch and Coming Around. HIs work has earned him a Crystal Heart Award from the Heartland Film Festival and a CINE Award.
LANCE WILLIAMS' (Producer) career as an international performer, producer and writer has spanned three decades. He has performed in foreign and domestic films, television, cable and in numerous national and local commercials. Lance graduated from Brigham Young University with a BA in theatre and cinematic arts.
As associate producer for National Independent Pictures in Hollywood, Lance produced work for network television and feature films. National independent Pictures [sic] also assigned Lance to produce corporate film and video throughout California. He has taught acting for Urban, McCarty and Eastman Agencies, JF Images (in both their Denver and Salt Lake City offices), LDS Business College and Salt Lake Community College.
Lance is the founder of American International Media, a motion picture and television production company that produced Housing the American Dream for Utah's Fox affiliate KSTU-13. Over the past few years he has produced the feature films Summer of the Eagle, The Creator's Game and Fielder's Choice. Lance is a published author of three works, including Promised Valley, the Novel, which is an historic fictional novel based on the play Promised Valley by Arnold Sundguard and Crawford Gates.
For MICAH MERRILL (Producer), a career in film was an easy choice. "Film has the best of all the arts: music, art direction, cinematography, writing, acting, directing -- all cooperating in one powerful medium," he says.
Earning his degree in film with an emphasis in screenwriting from Brigham Young University, Micah has been producing since 1994. His career has taken him from Franklin Covey, where he was media director, tot he sets of several productions, including The Touch, Circles, Shadows, 4th Witness, Stone Cold Dead, Pride & Produce, To Leave a Legacy, The Value of Time and The Nature of Leadership.
His efforts have already received industry recognition for excellence and positive values, including the Crystal Heart and CINE Awards. But for Micah, the impact of film is his primary reward. "Film is universal, and through it, compelling stories and positive messages can not only entertain, but make a difference," he says.
As vice-president of Kaleidoscope Pictures, Charly is Micah's first feature film.
HERBERT CHRISTENSEN (Executive Producer) is an inventor, engineer and businessman. In his over 30-year career, he has developed and administered many companies from start-up to profitable sale. he has designed and manufactured produces [sic] from concept through to distribution. Herb is a "Who's Who" in business, and has acquired a reputation of accountability and reliability. He also holds a master's degree in Physics from Brigham Young University.
Although most of his business endeavors primarily involve the private sector, Herb is no stranger to the motion picture industry. He served as exutive producer on the feature film Where's Willy and Jack Weyland's Charly. He is also story editor on another feature currently in development, Promised Valley.
TIP BOXELL (Co-Producer) earned a Bachelor's degree in English from Tufts University and an MA in Theater and Film from Brigham Young University. He was a charter member of the BYU Professional Film and Television Workshop, created and led by Tad Danielewski. He won awards for Best Student Director, Best Student Film and the Mormon Festival of Arts Playwriting Contest.
Tip has written over 80 short films and videos, which have been produced by business, government and academic clients. He wrote a Utah state historical Pageant (Kanosh: Legend of the Great Paiute) and partnered with Michael Jessee Bnnett in the Patrick Henry Project. He has also performed in 35 feature films, 35 short business industrial films, and over 150 television and radio commercials.
About Jack Weyland... JACK WEYLAND didn't expect to ever become a best-selling author. Born and raised in Montana, Jack attended Montana State University in Bozeman, where he graduated in physics. After serving an LDS mission to New York and Pennsylvania, Jack enrolled at Brigham Young University as a graduate student in physics.
One semester at BYU, Jack signed up for a creative writing class. After just a few weeks it became apparent to Jack that he was not performing well, and he dropped the course. Discouraged, he gave up the idea brewing in the back of his mind that someday he might become a writer.
Jack graduated with his Ph.D. from BYU and moved on, teaching physics at high school and college levels. After several years he ventured to take a correspondence course in writing, and ended up writing two short stories that wewre published in regional magazines. Encouraged by the experience, Jack set a goal to wrtie a screenplay. When the screenplay didn't work out, he decided to write a novel.
That novel was CHARLY. It was picked up by a local publisher and went on to become a regional phenomenon in the Intermountain West. Jack continued writing, and has to date published over 25 novels.
Jack Weyland is currently a professor of Physics at Brigham Young University-Idaho in Rexburg, ID. He continues to write and publish novels and short stories regularly.