Prairie Post (East Edition)

Film shot in Hilda area debuted at local theatre

- By Kendall King Alberta Newspaper Group

An upcoming post-apocalypti­c drama largely filmed in southeast Alberta is set to have its theatrical release in Medicine Hat and several other cities across the province.

Father of Nations, a 135-minute feature from Alberta film production company Thousand Year Films, made its debut Oct. 1 at the Calgary Internatio­nal Film Festival. And beginning Oct. 7, the film will be playing at Cineplex theatres in Calgary, Edmonton, Red Deer and Medicine Hat.

“It's a post-apocalypti­c drama about the last few people on Earth,” Nathan Horch, film writer, co-producer and actor, told the News. “We wanted to go right to the end of time of humanity and explore what it would be like in those final moments; what you would be reflecting on the journey that you that took you to that place, dealing with the grief and loss and also trying to find hope.”

The film's release is a long-time coming for Horch and the rest of the film's cast and crew, who began working on the project in 2017 but were paused by the pandemic.

“That pause required us to go back and do a few reshoots because some things had changed,” director and co-producer Aleisha Anderson said. “But we got through it.”

Anderson and Horsh are grateful to the many individual­s and communitie­s which supported them during both the initial filming and refilming, including those in southeast Alberta, where a large portion of the film was shot.

“We were all over the province,” said Anderson. “We shot in the mountains and the prairie and the badlands. But between Medicine Hat and Hilda was our primary location.”

As well as shooting in the southeast area, the film also features local talent who were included in the film as extras.

“You can see the film industry is moving here a little bit (because of) the talented people who are here, as well as the environmen­ts,” said Anderson. “So I think that we're just extremely proud to be a homegrown, independen­t production from the ground up.

“Obviously, we would love to see people go and see it in the theatre. It is meant to be seen on the big screen. And especially for folks in Medicine Hat as I'm sure they're going to recognize a lot of this stuff.”

With some familial ties to Medicine Hat, Anderson and Horch are hoping to make a stop here during opening weekend, as well as in some of the other cities Fathers of Nations will be showing.

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