When Jared Show traveled to Ellwood City to film Bigfoot the Movie, he had no idea that his hometown would be so accommodating.
“I was amazed at how supportive and helpful everyone was,” Show said.
Show grew up in the Ellwood City Area and attended Riverside School District. His grandfather used to tell Bigfoot stories. That, combined with his love for campy horror movies such as Tremors, were the inspiration for Bigfoot the Movie.
Filming occurred in the fall of 2013 and spring of 2014. Show, who now lives in California, was surprised at how accommodating people were.
“In California, if you want to film anything, people want to see permits, and they usually want paid,” he said. “In Ellwood, nobody gave us a hard time. It was all ‘okay, no problem.’”
Local businesses and residents, including the Oak Grove Inn, Hazel Manor, the Franklin Township Police Department, and Dr. Larry Dolter, all volunteered their time and locations for the movie. Large Pennsylvania companies, such as Yuengling and Primanti Brothers, gave permission for their brands to be used.
Concerning the actual filming, Show said it was a great experience in retrospect. However, at the time, the weather was consistently a problem.
It was cold most days on location. It could rain or snow any day. Some days, it seemed filming would have to be cancelled, then it would warm up and the snow would melt. Other days, scenes had to be interrupted due to weather.
By December, the onset of winter postponed filming until March, creating the additional problem of having to match the environment. Even then, rain and snow, sometimes on the same day, delayed shooting.
The weather did not hamper the cast and crew’s enthusiasm. Show particularly remembers one night on location at a barn when they spent the night around campfires, the actor playing Bigfoot staying in costume.
Now that the film is in post-production and Show is back in California, he is excited for future updates and the impending release of Bigfoot the Movie. “We’re hoping for some local theater releases, a DVD release, and an on-demand option,” he said.