Nestled in the woods several miles up Blue Mountain Road is a quiet, beautiful facility called Serenity Farm.
Year-round, children of all ages visit the farm to learn about different equestrian sports and how to interact safely with horses. Some stay for the day, others participate in weeklong camps.
When John Rodsett moved to Sequim three years ago, he was “overwhelmed by the beauty of the area.”
Living in a house that was part of the original 70-acre Serenity Farm plot of land, Rodsett immediately started thinking. He wrote a two-page synopsis set on the farm and in local bunkers and then tucked the project away for safekeeping. Now, he’s opened the file and is going ahead with full momentum.
Surrounded by a group of talented people he’s met living on the peninsula over the past few years, Rodsett has announced his plan to create a low-budget feature film titled “Serenity Farm.”
Production will begin in May and run through July, he said. The film will be distributed to 70 different countries.
“Serenity Farm” takes place on a remote Northwest island at a children’s horse farm. A group of camp counselors surrounded by beautiful horses and forest wander into old bunkers and tunnels when “serenity quickly turns to mystery and fear,” Rodsett described.
A promotional trailer about the movie can be viewed online on the film’s Facebook.com page.
Local sights will be included in the filming, including the Sequim Police Department station, a Victorian hotel in Port Townsend, the Holiday Inn in Sequim and the Olympic Game Farm. If the proper permits can be obtained, the bunkers in Port Townsend might even be featured, according to Rodsett.
“The object is to provide a video utilizing a local crew and talent,” he said. “I love giving back; they want to learn and I want to give. It’s a good combination.”
Rodsett said he may be interested in using animals from the Olympic Game Farm in the film but that no animals would be hurt during the process. During a recent tour of the game farm, the producer looked at a large wolf and a black bear as potential candidates.
At the very least, Rodsett said he’s talking with game farm president Bob Beebe about using the barn studio as a filming site with a mock-up of a World War II-era bunker.
Replicating the bunker scenes would eliminate the challenge of weather interference and would draw even more attention to the farm during the summer months, Rodsett said.
Rodsett started his career in the film and entertainment industry more than 30 years ago. His production resumé lists numerous TV series, including “M*A*S*H.”
Since starting his own independent film and sales agency in 1987, Rodsett has produced 20 independent films and has handled the distribution and sales for hundreds of films all around the world.
In more recent years, Rodsett has started focusing his energy on “giving back.” He’s taught global business and marketing at the University of Washington and marketing and entertainment at the University of Miami. As “Mr. Film Biz,” Rodsett maintains an active blog — Rodsett Report — and leads independent film business seminars.
Because the film is a low-budget production, Rodsett isn’t trying to recruit popular Hollywood actors and actresses. Instead, he’s issuing a widespread open call for local talent.
“If you are interested in the film industry, please contact me,” he said. “We are looking for people of all ages and experience levels to act and join the crew of a thriller feature film that will be distributed all around the world.”
To contact Rodsett, visit his website at www.mrfilmbiz.com.