Sunday, December 07, 2008

CBS's 'Front of the Class' draws from local talent pool

I spent my Sunday night watching the CBS Hallmark Hall of Fame movie "Front of the Class." It was filmed in Shreveport and was a pretty solid two hours. It's based on Brad Cohen's book of the same name, which details his life with Tourette's syndrome.

I saw lots of local faces, including local stage actors like Tyler Krieg, Mike Martindale and Patrick Kirton.

Krieg's scene, in which he's a member of a Tourette's syndrome help-group, earned notice in this Reuter's review. Here's an excerpt: "Tom Rickman, who adapted the book, puts Brad's struggle in admirable perspective. There are the obvious school scenes in which his behavior is mistaken for intentional clowning. But there's also a scene with the boy and his mother (Patricia Heaton) attending a Tourette's support group. When they realize that nearly everyone in the room has lowered their ambitions as an accommodation to the condition, they don't stay long."

While there's not much critique in this excerpt, it's a sign that local actors' work is getting noticed. There's a lot of talent in this city, and I've witnessed a lot of it on local stages. "Front of the Class" is evidence that local talent can both feed and succeed in the industry.

Good work, everyone. Let me know if you had a role, and I'll feature you.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree we do have some great local actors in ShreveportBossier. Most locals seen in this movie were just background extras. Maybe one or two locals had a small speaking part and the others were background extras with no lines. For the most part, local actors are not being seriously considered for movie roles, even if they are members of SAG. Maybe they need to go on strike.

Anonymous said...

Derek Johnson had a speaking role for one scene, I think.

kevin said...

i was in this movie. I have touretts and was contacted to play a part in this movie. It was exciting to see other people with my syndrone. I would like to talk to others with touretts. Please contace me, euspears@aol.com.

Kevin Spears

Glorioso said...

The extras did a great job! They made us very proud!

Anonymous said...

I agree. Casting did a great job. Extras or whatever, they all looked good! Especially the children. Now lets keep the films coming to NWLouisiana. We have a gold mine opportunity here that our city leaders still don't take very seriously. It takes more than lip service to keep the industry interested in the shreve. Lets listen to what THEY want from us.

Anonymous said...

How about doing a feature on Katherine Shepler, who played the role of Heather. I understand this was her very first movie part. She lives in Roswell, Ga.

Anonymous said...

Heather was great. Hope they air it again soon. Definitely one of the better movies to come out of Shreveport.