Imagine traveling back in time to 1933, swing dancing in a nightclub during the end of Prohibition. That will be possible this Saturday at 6 p.m. at the Park Theatre in Cranston for the premiere of the film "I’ll Be Seeing You."
It was written, directed and produced entirely by University of Rhode Island film and media students.
Ryan Casey, who graduated from URI’s film/media program in December, wrote and directed this film as a semester-long project in Keith Brown’s advanced narrative production class. Most of the short films for this class are only about 10 minutes long, but Casey’s is nearly 50 minutes.
A fan of Frank Sinatra and Louis Armstrong, Casey has been told many times that he has an “old soul.” He decided to write a script for a film about a young man, Charlie, in the present day who works in his grandfather’s bar. He hits his head while working one night and wakes up to find that he’s been transported 80 years into the past. Similar to The Wizard of Oz, Casey said, Charlie encounters people from his real life when he travels back in time. The film includes moments of suspense, romance and comedy.
Casey wanted the film to accurately represent the 1930s—from the cars to the costumes—which made it somewhat challenging to finance. Casey and his crew created a video campaign using Indiegogo, a crowd-funding website for people to donate to art projects, and raised about $3,000. Casey was able to rent a 1934 Packard limousine and a 1929 Rolls Royce from a local collector who offers his cars for films. The supervisors at the Biltmore Hotel in Providence donated the ballroom for three nights of filming, and the East Greenwich Police Department blocked traffic on Main Street for an overnight shoot outside of the Greenwich Hotel and Greenwich Odeum.
“I feel so blessed and honored to have had this opportunity,” said Casey, a Cranston, native. “Whether it’s a great success or ‘Rotten Tomatoes’ gives it a poor ranking, I’m still very proud of the film, and the support I’ve gotten from other people means the most to me.”
The premiere was originally scheduled for Feb. 9, but because of Winter Storm Nemo, it was rescheduled for this weekend. Casey expects about 500 people to attend.
Tickets can be purchased online in advance for $10 or at the door for $12. To buy tickets, watch the film’s trailer, and learn more about the cast and crew, visit www.illbeseeingyou2012.com.