Jul 25, 2014

Hollywood Turning Westchester Into Winter Wonderland

The stars came to Tarrytown and brought fake snow with them to make Warner Brothers blockbuster, "A Winter's Tale."

Hollywood Turning Westchester Into Winter Wonderland

Although Westchester has not had much snow accumulation this season, folks may have noticed that Lyndhurst in Tarrytown seems to be enjoying its very own weather system.

In fact, Lyndhurst was recently the site of a film shoot for what promises to be a major holiday hit, starring all kinds of big name actors, and creating its own snowy landscape.

Lyndhurst Director of Communications Christine Plazas confirmed that shooting just wrapped for A Winter’s Tale based on Mark Helprin’s bestseller by the same name.

“It really will be spectacular,” Plazas said of the movie slated for release during the holiday season in 2014.

A Winter's Tale is the directorial debut of Akiva Goldsman, who also wrote the script. He is the Oscar-winning screenwriter for A Beautiful Mind.

Coincidentally, Sylvia Nasar, author of the book A Beautiful Mind, lives in Tarrytown and was recently in the news for her lawsuit filed against Columbia University for close to $1 million for an endowment grant she says she is owed.

The Hollywood Reporter is calling A Winter's Tale a:

sweeping drama about reincarnation...The story…focuses on a thief on the run who, when breaking into a wealthy man’s home, strikes up a relationship with the man’s terminally ill daughter. A flying horse and a time-shift 100 years also figures into the equation.

The movie will jump from 1899 featuring Lyndhurst and the Coe Hall mansion in Long Island to contemporary Manhattan. Stars of the flick include Russell Crowe as a ruthless mobster, Will Smith in a cameo as a judge and Jennifer Connelly, who costarred with Crowe in A Beautiful Mind.

Deadline reported the following famous additions to the $46 million Warner Brothers' film: William Hurt as the dying girl’s father, Collin Farrell as the thief, Downtown Abbey’s Jessica Brown Findlay as the dying young girl and Eva Marie Saint.

Plazas said the crew had been at Lyndhurst three times since the fall, for several days each time, and “was just delightful to work with.”

The snow production to cover the front lawn (since nature did not deliver) happened on the Monday prep day and took five hours, involving huge machines and the building itself getting covered with a tent.

Plazas couldn’t share names or photos – beyond the one of the snowy grounds  – and said that while Russell Crowe was not on set, “the others were here.”

Presumably some Tarrytown business owners and patrons got a brush with fame as most of the cast went to to Main Street to dine locally for lunch, so “they did bring in some business," Plazas said.

And of course film shoots are a boon for Lyndhurst, a not-for-profit, where the money, said Plazas, is “well-needed to keep us operating.” 

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