Lexington, KY, Friday, November 23th, 2018 Moonbow Productions are thrilled to announce today that production and post-production on their first feature film, MOONBOW, has wrapped and will head to the film festival circuit starting in January of 2019.
A horror film based on the local urban legends of Cumberland Falls, MOONBOW follows four local friends in their early 20’s, who take their co-workers on an overnight trip to see the moonbow (a rainbow at night that can only be seen under a full moon). On their journey, the group discovers the cosmic power of the moonbow, and they soon realize that some legends are true.
The film was shot entirely on two Samsung Galaxy 9s making it the first feature-length film of its kind. Director Chadwell states, “The reason we used the SG 9s was based on our budget, which was very small. Daniel came across an article about Steven Soderbergh’s “Unsane”, which was filmed exclusively on iPhones. Once we realized this was a viable option, it was all systems go. I choose the Samsung over the iPhone because of the dual apertures and it’s superiority in low light situations. I’m beyond pleased with the results. The SG 9s add a tough/gritty feel to the film. They bring a realness to the project, as an audience member you feel like you are with the group, going through this situation. The affordability of this technology allows anyone to capture epic cinemagraphic shots, get off your couch and make a film!”
MOONBOW was written and directed by first-time director/producer/writer/editor William Robert Chadwell. “I guess the origin of the idea for Moonbow came during my childhood. I grew up in Corbin in the 1980s, I vividly remember my sister telling me local urban legends about Devils Creek, satanic churches, and Dogslaughter Falls. I also used to have nightmares growing up about going over Cumberland Falls and getting caught in the undertow. So, the Falls area has always had this sense of mystical energy for me. Years later I moved to central Kentucky but I loved bringing friends who had never seen or even heard of the moonbow down to Corbin for overnight camping trips. I would act as a tour guide, telling them the local legends and showing them the amazing scenery. On the way home from one of these trips, I had the idea that this would make a great scary movie. So, I went home and wrote the first scene. Then life happened and that scene sat in a drawer for about 20 years. Recently, my family and I started making a yearly trip to Cumberland Falls. I found myself telling the same legends to my wife and daughters and the ideas for the movie just started coming out. I got really serious about the idea in January after watching an independent movie called Bourbon County. The next day I watched 3 Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri and was blown away. I sat down and knocked out the script in two weeks. It was the first script I had ever written and it was definitely not in any kind of formal script format. I remember a quote from Sir Paul McCartney that talked about The Beatles not being classically trained as musicians, he thinks that by not being confined by the rules and laws of music it allowed them to be more creative, not in a box, they just played what felt natural and what they thought sounded good. So, I adapted that mantra to this filmmaking process. Another huge inspiration for this film was when Daniel gave me a copy of Robert Rodriguez’s Rebel Without a Crew. That book really showed me that you don’t need all this money and a huge production team to make a film. You only need passion, creativity, and organization. Once we realized that the technology to make a film was affordable, the ball really started rolling. I meet Chad around April through a mutual friend and he brought over a decade of filmmaking experience to the project. My wife Amber took care of costumes, found all the props, and most importantly believed in me and my vision. Daniel researched and tested the equipment, brought a huge level of creativity and was a patient soundboard for my insanity. Once the production team was set, we held auditions. The universe sent us some amazing young actors that were chosen based on their unique personalities, coachability, and passion. I decide that this project needed my full attention, so I quit my job of 7 years and put all the chips on the table. We began filming in late August and wrapped in late October. We finished editing last week, and the film is ready for the film festival circuits and distribution. MOONBOW’s Co-Director and Director of Photography was Daniel Hamblin and Executive produced by William Chadwell, Daniel Hamblin, Amber Chadwell and Chad C. Hundley (Justice League Films’ INTO THE WOODS and web-series SUPER UN-NATURAL).
Moonbow Productions assembled a young ensemble of new actors alongside of veteran actress Cassidy Rae Owens (HALLOWEEN HOMECOMING). When asked what makes this film different from any others that she has been involved with in the past, she said “What makes this film different is the drive behind it. Everyone was motivated in this film in some way and had so much passion for doing it, that we all fed off each other to make it such a positive experience.” Owens also said that she went into this project thinking that this was a first-time filmmaker and that it would be a networking opportunity but became so much more than that through everyone genuinely wanting to make this film the best it could be. “Everyone on this film showed me why I started acting in the first place.” quotes Cassidy.
The film also stars newcomer Roshown Gateskill who plays Mick Beige, the ring-leader of the group of local friends. When asked what kind of research he did in order to relate to his character, Roshown said, “Me and some of the cast members actually watched Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas to get like the druggy feel of things. We looked up how things were in the late 90’s-early 2000’s, how we should act and what words we should use. So like it was a lot of “your mom” jokes.” He said he feels like he related to his character and “was definitely Mick Beige in high school”.
“Being a first time director, coming in with no experience was exhilarating, overwhelming, and amazing. Outside of my wedding day and the birth of my two girls, it’s the most important thing I’ve done in my life. Although I didn’t have any filmmaking experience, I tried to rely on my decades of experience in coaching and managing teams of up to sixty team members. We took on the war cry of “El Mariachi”, which was inspired by Robert Rodriguez’s book called Rebel Without a Crew. I made sure to bring passion, energy, organization, creativity, and most importantly fun to the project. I learned that the most important tool in filmmaking is decision making. Orson Welles said, “A director is someone who presides over a series of accidents.” It’s your job as a director to capture these accidents, to facilitate organized chaos. Quick decisions have to be made on set, you are not always going to make the right decisions, but you must stand by your decisions and if you made the wrong decision make sure you learn from it and never make the same mistake twice.” Chadwell explains.
Production meetings and auditions were held in July. Filming began in August and wrapped in October. Post-production is finished and a release will be announced soon.
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