|
|
The Suburbanite
  • 'Underdogs' filming at Aquinas lures movie hopefuls

  • The people who showed up Wednesday at St. Thomas Aquinas Sirpilla Stadium to be bit players and extras in “Underdogs,” a high school football-themed film, directed by Canton native Doug Dearth and being produced locally, just wanted a place in Stark County’s proud football history, or, in their own personal history.

    • email print
  • »  RELATED CONTENT
    • FILES/LINKS
  • They weren’t driven by dreams of stardom, or even red-carpet treatment.
    The people who showed up Wednesday at St. Thomas Aquinas Sirpilla Stadium to be bit players and extras in “Underdogs,” a high school football-themed film, directed by Canton native Doug Dearth and being produced locally, just wanted a place in Stark County’s proud football history, or, in their own personal history.
    A football game was filmed Wednesday at the field. Emails and other messages were sent out and production people expected between 300 and 400 people for extras as cheering fans.
    Sarah Grosswiller, who just graduated, led cheers for the Aquinas Knights in high school, and had a role cheering for the mythical Knights in the film.
    “I’m very excited,” she said. “I’m excited they’re at the school I graduated from.”
    Her mother registered her online for an audition at the former Hoover Co. building in North Canton, and she was chosen. All those picked for cheerleader spots learned some cheers.
    “I don’t think we’re going to have any lines, just cheering on the sidelines,” she said.
    Adrian Burt, a 1993 Timken High School graduate who played running back and didn’t look like he lost a lot of game shape, brought his 5-year-old son, Adrion, and 10-year-old niece, Takia, and 18-year-old nephew, Juan, and big signs to be fans in the stands.
    There were warnings for aspirants that the filming could take 10 to 12 hours. “They said bring extra clothes and lunch, so we came prepared,” Burt said. “I got plenty of liquids and snacks. I’ve got a couple of games for them,” he said. “I’ll jut keep them occupied. We’re good to go.”
    He had no idea, or care, that he’d be rooting for the winning team.
    Montel Bush played right tackle for the Wildcats at Canton South High School. He is hoping to walk on at the University of Akron this year.
    At 6-feet, 5-inches and 300 pounds, he said he has been in a number of roles and has no idea how he will appear in the film. “I just know I’m going to be on the offensive or defensive line,” he said. It’s not hard to imagine.
    Angela Boehm is the artistic director at (North) Olmsted Performing Arts. She was helping to process the extras flooding through. The production needed a release form and a photo to match up with every extra’s image, she said.
    Elaine Neff, 70, a Plain Township resident and 1959 (“the best year”) Jackson High grad, came out wearing oxygen apparatus because of weak lungs, didn’t expect to be out by herself. “I’ve got all these good-looking grandchildren and they couldn’t come” because of other valid issues, she said.
    Page 2 of 2 - On a hot, sunny day, she was wearing a black sweater, but she said she picked a light one. “They said to dress like you’re going to a football game,” she said.
    She was undaunted by the potential length of the work. “Sure I’ll stay,” she said. “I’ve got more oxygen in the car.”
    There was magic in the air for Neff. “It’s been my dream all my life to be in a movie, and there’s my bucket list.”

        calendar