NEW PALESTINE — The Sugar Creek Library summer reading club for teens is called “Spark a Reaction,” and organizers are hoping to do just that.
In addition to getting county teens interested in summer reading, library officials have developed a new challenge for teens in hopes they’ll get all kinds of creative juices flowing this summer.
Sugar Creek Library officials plan to make a movie called “The Page Turners” with local teens writing producing and starring in all the roles.
“ ‘Spark a Reaction’ is a science-based theme,” Sugar Creek Library teen coordinator Sarah Schmitt said. “We decided to combine science, technology and math into one big, huge project, which is to make a movie.”
Schmitt reached out to the New Palestine High School Writing Club where local teens agreed to
write the screenplay.
“They worked incredibly hard and came up with a great script that exceeded our expectations, and now we are going to make the movie,” Schmitt said.
While she is lining up professionals who will help mentor the teens taking part in the short film, the teens are figuring out their roles and will soon be trying out for parts.
“The movie is about a kid who has to do a book report and has put it off until the last minute because he hates reading,” Schmitt said. “The characters come out of the book, and things start happening.”
Auditions are scheduled to take place June 9, 10 and 11 at the Sugar Creek Library, where most of the shooting for the film will also take place.
Students in sixth grade through age 19 are welcome to either try out for a movie part or become part of the crew that will shoot and edit the film.
Senior Kyle May, a soon-to-be NPHS graduate, has been selected to direct the film. He said he’s excited about it, even though he may not know a lot about film direction.
“I don’t have any directing experience, but I have worked in video, and I guess you could say that I did direct a student-led project last year that kind of fell apart,” May said.
Still, he’s looking forward to working on a project that is planned to be shown on a big screen on the Sugar Creek Library lawn in front a large crowd later this summer.
“It’s really awesome to see a project that is a collaborative effort and is not just something by me,” May said. “I’ve made short videos before, but to have a huge effort like this with a number of people from all different backgrounds come together I think is really cool.”
Kaylee Wheatley, a freshman at NPHS, plans to try out for one of the roles and said she hopes the experience will lead to other acting adventures.
“It does sound like a lot like fun, and I have always wanted to be an actress,” she said. “Working on this film would give me some good experience.”
While she has no idea what to expect, she’s seen the script and said it will translate great to the movie screen. Classmate Andrea Wilson plans to be an assistant director.
“I’ve always liked the idea of making movies,” Andrea said. “I like doing all the technology stuff, so it just seems very interesting to me.”
Library officials say anyone in the county who’d like to be a part of the movie either in front of the camera or behind the scenes helping the students should stop by during the auditions.
“It’s going to be an incredibly intense project,” Schmitt said. “We’re auditioning, rehearsing and filming all in a three-week period so we are looking for teens that can be here.”
Once the project is edited by the post-production team, the film will have a premiere Aug. 2 on the lawn at the library.
“We plan to do the whole red carpet thing,” Schmitt said, adding that another popular youth-themed movie, “Holes,” will be shown the same night.
Both movies are considered a community event and will be open free to the public.
Librarians plan to build a large viewing screen that will eventually end up at the county’s main library in Greenfield.
Audition times for “The Page Turners”
Where: Sugar Creek Library
When: 4 to 7 p.m. Monday, June 9
10 a.m. to noon Tuesday, June 10
Noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday, June 11