Asheville Film to Premeire at Venice Film Festival

"Road to Nowhere," the independent motion picture filmed last year in Western North Carolina, will premiere at the prestigious Venice Film Festival in Italy, which is scheduled September 1-11. The film is one of 19 selected to represent the United States, along with others by such notable directors as Martin Scorsese, Sofia Coppola, Ben Affleck and the late Dennis Hopper.

"Road to Nowhere" was directed by indie film guru Monte Hellman, and written and produced by Steven Gaydos. It stars Dominique Swain (“JAG,” “Ghost Whisperer”), Shannyn Sossamon (“How to Make it in America,” “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit”), Tygh Runyan (“Battlestar Galactica,” “SGU Stargate Universe”), and Cliff De Young (“The Young and the Restless,” “Grey’s Anatomy”).

“Road to Nowhere” is described as a romance-thriller about a young filmmaker who gets wrapped up in a crime while shooting his latest project on location. The real filmmakers spent two months last year shooting in several areas of North Carolina, including Jackson, Graham, Buncombe, Haywood, and Swain Counties, the cities of Waynesville, Asheville and Bryson City, and at Fontana Lake.

“Filming in Western North Carolina was a wonderful experience,” said co-producer Peter R.J. Deyell, who is based in Los Angeles. “We were welcomed by friendly communities and had enormous cooperation by local business, government, and law enforcement. We hired very professional local crew members and were supported by film students from Western Carolina University.”

Locations included Fontana Lake and Fontana Dam, for which the filmmakers were required to obtain special permits from The Tennessee Valley Authority. The Federal Aviation Administration granted permission for the filmmakers to fly a small airplane over Fontana Dam. And the Great Smoky Mountains National Park allowed the company to shoot the actual Road to Nowhere and the tunnel at its end, specific locations that director Monte Hellman wanted, as described in the script.

“The level of cooperation we received was exceptional,” Deyell said. “I look forward to working in North Carolina again, when I shoot my next feature, ‘Blood Lake,’ in 2011.”

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