Westport Central School graduate and New York University film student Addison Mehr came home to the Champlain Valley last summer to shoot the indie film Fort Apache.
Filmakers wrapped up on July 4, after shooting in several towns in the North Country. A crew of about 30, including Westport Central School Junior Dustin Schoenfeld, worked on the film shooting at 12 locations in 11 days (Denpubs).
The movie is set in a small town of Krafton, which Mehr said reminded him of growing up in Westport and other Adirondack towns while reading the original story and ultimately inspired him to film here (Denpubs).
Filming in Westport
One of the local towns that Mehr chose to film scenes for Fort Apache in was his hometown Westport, NY. Filming at night to be more of a convenience to locals, the “section of roadway from Bradamount Realty to Me and My Girls Cafe had been closed from about 11 p.m. until 3 a.m.” (Denpubs).
Mehr and his team spent months researching both archival and creative photos as well as pulling references from numerous films to accurately create sets for the film’s historical setting.
The K & D Deli exterior was transformed into a barber shop, the Besssboro shop into a dress shop and a grocery in their other window and the windows of Bradamount Realty was transformed into a hat shop. (Denpubs)
About the Film
The film is an adaptation of the Award Winning Short Story by Alan Heathcock “Volt,” published by Graywolf Press.
“Fort Apache” is the story of Walt Freely, a fourteen year old who lives in the small town of Krafton, and is emerging out of the naive world of children and into the savage world of adults, a world of indifference, sexuality, and destruction. (fortapachefilm.com)
While Fort Apache is a coming of age story, it’s also a story about injustice, social inequality, and the universal struggle to find your place. To me, the story is about pushing against boundaries and dealing with the frustrations, bitter disappointments, and ultimate realizations of growing up. It’s about escape and the deep desire to transcend ones place and time. By shooting in the places I grew up in I hope to bring the highest level of authenticity to the story while visualizing it to its full potential. ~ Addison Mehr (Kickstarter)
The film was financially funded in part by supporters through the website, Kickstarter.
Watch the trailer:
Mehr said the film will be in post-production for several months and hopes to have a screening in the area, most likely at the Palace Theatre in Lake Placid. Those who donated to help fund the film project through Kickstarter will be sent a digital download as soon as the film is finished. (Denpubs)