FILMMAKER HELPS RESTORE TOWN DEVASTATED BY HURRICANESby Scott Churchson
For filmmaker Steven James Creazzo, the town of Prattsville New York is like a second home. As a child the award winning filmmaker used to spend 1-2 weekends a month with his family in the small Hudson Valley town for snowmobile riding and filming there with his friends. In 2011 the town was devastated by what Gov. Andrew Cuomo labeled as the place in New York State hit hardest by Hurricane Irene. In 2012 they were hit again by Hurricane Sandy. Creazzo’s goal was to help get the town and the area back on its feet and give some “real positive, productive light on the Catskill area.” Through his company Dreamality Entertainment (http://www.dreamalityentertainment.biz/ ), his award winning film My Little Demon was filmed entirely in Prattsville just 2 months before Hurricane Irene hit.
His new film, The Killing Time starring Michael Paré and Lance Henriksen will also be filmed entirely in Prattsville. Although the film hasn't been released, Creazzo expects to make a sequel, maybe even a trilogy. The next film possibly around Kingston, New York, about 45 miles south east of Prattsville. Future projects he expects to film in this area include Dying Breed with John Schneider, Courtney Gains and Miracle Laurie and the film Climbing Life, of which Lee Majors (best known for his roles as Steve Austin the 6 Million Dollar Man and Colt Seavers in The Fall Guy) called him personally to convey his interest in being part of the film. Creazzo was thrilled. “I almost didn't answer the phone when I saw the number because I didn't know who it was. When my wife asked me later, 'How was your day?' I said, 'You're not going to believe this!'”
So what does all this filming mean for the area? Simply put, more jobs and more revenue. Jobs include actors, equipment technicians, camera operators, editors, photographers and set and exhibit designers. Revenue gets created through increased spending on caterers, car/truck rental companies, restaurants, fuel/service stations, equipment rentals, etc. Most of his films go through the traditional funding route although some are going through crowd funding; a process whereby people contribute money however they can to help finance a film. While this will raise revenue for the Hudson Valley area, the problem is awareness that this area is available. “What they need is press up in the Hudson Valley. NBC, CBS...” He also plans to contact local radio stations like WHUD to raise awareness to filming in the area. Plans are also in place to build an entire studio on a 500 acre lot that will allow filmmakers from all across the country to be able to film here.
For Steven James Creazzo, doing what he does best is helping this small town rebuild in a big way.