Attractions August Article

X-Men 3 begins filming here in Victoria during the month of August. Filming started in San Francisco in late July, but not for the feature, for the Trailer. Production crews won’t confirm which stars will and won’t be in town. Certainly not all of the cast will be in town as the shooting is for the exterior scenes of the X-Mansion, also known as Charles Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters.

The cast consists of returning stars Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Halle Berry and Ian McKellen. Kelsey Grammer has signed on to play the blue and furry Beast, Ben Foster will play Angel and Vinnie Jones has joined the cast as Xavier’s half brother, Juggernaught. Also just announced, as a new cast member is 15 year-old Canadian Ellen Page, stepping into the role of Kitty Pryde aka Shadowcat. Tons of Victorians will be on set at Royal Roads’ Hatley Castle, as they will play extras, students of Professor Xavier’s school.

Also shooting in Victoria, The Engagement Ring, the story of a couple that meet and fall in love but are hampered by family members who are still fuming over an old engagement ring. So far the only person cast for the made for television film is Everyone Loves Raymond star Patricia Heaton. The story is set to take place in the Napa Valley, California’s wine country. Vancouver Island’s own wine country of the Cowichan valley maybe standing in for Napa or it may be a winery in Nanaimo where Producers were scouting in late July.

Patricia Heaton is also set to appear in a TV miniseries based on the events of 9/11. She’ll play the US ambassador to Yemen, Barbara Bodine.

Other areas of the island are being looked at for production potential, as Brightlight Productions, no stranger to Vancouver Island, constructs a medieval village in Beecher Bay for their $60Million Dungeon Siege motion picture starring Matthew Lillard and John Rhys-Davies (I wonder if he's playing the Dwarf?). Vancouver based Brightlight shot six MOWs (Movie of the Week) last year for CHUM. The film, based on a 2002 PC game-series, follows Farmer, played by The Transporter’s Jason Statham, as he sets out to rescue his kidnapped wife and avenge the death of his son at the hands of Ray Lolita’s character, Gillian. The script came out of the collective minds of Doug Taylor, David S. Freeman, and Glenn Benest.

Casting director Carmen Amos of Nanaimo put out an open call for Indo-Canadian male and females between 35-45 with no experience necessary. Any Island based actor who fits the bill and can speak some Hindi and/or Punjabi can call Carmen Amos at 250 716 0503 for an audition.

September is just around the corner and the networks are putting the finishing touches on their new shows. Last month I talked about UPN and FOX, now let’s take a look at what the big boys at what ABC has for our viewing pleasure.

ABC serves up three new dramas and two new comedies. On the top of the list is a political drama set to play out on Tuesday nights. Commander-In-Chief tells the as yet fictional story of America’s first female President, played by Academy Award-winner Geena Davis. The series starts with her as Vice-President to a President about to undergo an operation for a brain tumor. When it isn’t successful, she’s asked to step aside by a sexist Speaker of the House, Donald Sutherland, who is apparently more sympathetic to the party’s desires. She’ll have plenty of obstacles in her way and the show will undoubtedly show a side of the White House not seen in the West Wing.

The Invasion comes late Wednesday nights. What if aliens already walked among us, instead of flying through space? What if our apparently natural disasters were part of their plans, a cover to their real activities? When yet another devastating hurricane threatens Florida, temporarily cutting off a small town at the edge of the Everglades, U.S. Park Ranger Russell Poole takes heroic measures to keep both the town's citizens and his family safe. In the middle of the violent storm, his young daughter is the only one to see small lights floating towards the water, seemingly unaffected by the vicious winds. At the time he thinks nothing of her claim, but begins to suspect that something may indeed be amiss when his missing ex-wife is found naked, with no memory of what happened during the storm. When he starts to explore the strange incidents he begins a fight for survival of the human race.

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