Alumnus revisits campus to film movie

Edward Dublin, from Murray, graduated from Murray State in 2008, and has been thinking about making a film his entire life.

“I’ve had a life-long passion for film – it’s actually more of an obsession because it’s all I’ve ever really wanted to do,” Dublin said. “I’ve never really had the nerve to (become a film writer or film director), but this is the year I said either I do it or stop talking about it.”

What started as a dream has turned into a full-blown film to be shot in Murray during October. Dublin originally called the film “Thursday Night Lights” when he was first bouncing the idea around. The dark romantic comedy based in Murray finally got its name “Small Town” after being a work-in-progress for six years.

“I came up with the idea for “Small Town” about six years ago as a story chronicling me and my friends and the stupid things we did in college,” Dublin said. “I found (the ‘Thursday Night Lights’ script) recently and erased everything but the opening scene before I wrote a first draft of ‘Small Town.’ Within two weeks I had written two more rough drafts and started showing it to people – my parents, my friends. Everyone liked (the script), so I was like okay I’m going to actually make this.”

After finishing the time-consuming script writing process, Dublin started to search for his actors, actresses and crewmembers. He found people that are passionate about his film across the country, from Los Angeles, to Memphis, Tenn., to St. Louis, Mo.

Sarah Clark, a Murray State graduate student from Paducah, Ky., was contacted by Dublin about participating in the film.

“I will be playing ‘Leslie’ in the film,” Clark said. “The character is similar to me – upbeat, excited and we may have had some of the same life experiences. Anyone who knows me will agree (the role is) the perfect fit.”

Not only is Clark made for her role in the movie, but the other actors and crewmembers are suitable to the director’s standards as well.

“Everyone seems to love (the film) and believes in it, which has been a gigantic help to getting this made,” Dublin said. “I’ve been lucky to have people that have helped me keep my mind through this whole thing because (films) take time. It’s not as easy as you think – it takes a lot of time and money.”

For Dublin, the time, money and effort needed for his film were well worth the effort to represent Murray, the town in which he has lived and done all of his schooling.

“I want to show how beautiful I think our town is, and our campus especially,” Dublin said. “Just representing a normal American small town. (Murray) is a college town and we’re still growing. I wanted to paint a picture of our town – not a hole in the wall in Kentucky, but a thriving community.”

Working with Roundabout U has given Clark the chance to film on Murray’s campus previously. She said even the process of filming for the movie will represent the feel of Murray.

“I think it will be a great atmosphere,” Clark said. “MSU has so many energetic students, so there will never be a dull moment. I am looking forward to (the film itself) because I feel like Murray is indescribable to anyone who has never experienced it. I hope that this film gives people a little taste of what makes this place so special to the people who call it their home.”

Dublin said he plans on shooting the film all over Murray, including in the Quad, The Big Apple Cafe, a few Murray restaurants, the Cheri theater, one of the thrift stores, a park and maybe even a football game.

“We’re going to start (shooting the film) the fifteenth of October, I think,” Dublin said. “We will be shooting the actual movie for about twenty days – just filming. Ninety-nine percent of ‘Small Town’ will be shot in Murray, and we may shoot some of it in Hazel. There’s a whole portion of the film that’s going to be shot on campus.”

Hoping to have the film out by spring of 2013, Dublin is already making plans to premiere the film at Murray’s Cheri Theater.

“I want to show how beautiful I think our town is, and our campus especially,” Dublin said. “Just representing a normal American small town. (Murray) is a college town and we’re still growing. I wanted to paint a picture of our town—not a hole in the wall in Kentucky, but a thriving community.”

–Edward Dublin Director for the film “Small Town”

“If I’m lucky enough to get accepted into (one of the larger film festivals) we’d have the premiere (at the festival),” Dublin said. “Then the next showing would be in Murray, hopefully at the Cheri because I’ve been going there my whole life.”

“Small Town” still has room for extras as well as a handful of speaking roles.

“If you have the opportunity to be a part of ‘Small Town,’ you really should,” Clark said. “­This kind of opportunity is rare, and anything that happens on Murray State’s campus always goes far.”

For more information, visit facebook.com/smalltown2013.

Story by Maddie Mucci, Staff writer.