"Serial Daters Anonymous" puts Milwaukee on the silver screen
Just when "The Surface" finished shooting in Milwaukee, another film started rolling the cameras.
"Serial Daters Anonymous," starring Scottish actress Louise Linton and Milwaukee's Sam Page, was filmed last week in various local locations including the InterContinental Hotel, Oak Lounge, Katie Gingrass Art Gallery, Valentine Coffee, Luv Unlimited and more.
"There's quite a few recognizable Milwaukee places in the film," says Christopher Carson Emmons, who wrote and directed the film.
"Serial Daters Anonymous" is set in a generic Midwestern town, not specifically Milwaukee.
Emmons, who grew up in Brown Deer, likens his romantic comedy to "Bridget Jones's Diary" or "Runaway Bride."
The story revolves around Claire, a witty fashion columnist (played by Linton), who finds out her fiance cheated on her and therefore jilts him at the alter. She then goes into full-on retaliation rebound mode and starts dating lots of different men. When she meets Page's character, she feels herself falling for him, and has to decide if she's ready and willing to love again.
The 90-minute film will be finished by the end of the year. It will be available for viewing in 2014, but at this point, Emmons is not sure where.
Linton has appeared on "CSI: NY," "Cold Case," "Lions for Lambs," "The Echo" and "William and Kate." She just completed a lead role in a thriller called "The Intruder."
Linton, who has the same agent as Jack Nicholson, says she fell in love with the "Serial Daters" script while reading it.
"The dialogue is extremely witty," says Linton, who studied at Edinburgh Drama Academy and the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.
Linton was particularly impressed with the main character's intelligence.
"She is a brilliant girl. Not the usual female character that gets put in the corner," she says. "I feel very lucky to have played such a clever, clever girl."
Picking up the Midwest accent was a challenge for Linton, but one she mastered in the end with help from Emmons as well as a California-based speaking coach.
"There were only one or two problematic words for me," she says. "My pronunciation, at times, caused a few giggles on the set."
Linton says she finds the Midwest accent to have an earnest tone.
"There's an honesty in the way Midwesterners speak, an integrity," she says.
Page is finishing up the second season of "House Of Cards," opposite Kevin Spacey. He is also known for his roles on "Scandal," "Mad Men," "Desperate Housewives," "Shark" and "CSI: NY."
Linton says working with Page was a positive experience. "He is very charming and professional," she says.
Emmons sees this film as a "farewell to Milwaukee." He moved to Los Angeles just two weeks before filming. Prior, he spent most of his life in the Milwaukee area because his father, Scott Emmons, works at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's Peck School of the Arts, where he is currently serving as dean.
However, Emmons chose Milwaukee for the setting of his film not only because he grew up here and because he wanted closure on his childhood city, but because he believes Milwaukee's unique culture is not represented enough in the media and that it's one people around the world can relate to and appreciate.
"There's a very different texture here than other places where films usually take place like New York or Los Angeles or even Chicago," he says. "It's another chance to get Milwaukee on the filmmaking map."
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