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‘Clear Lake, WI’ movie producer visits UWRF to give career advice

October 22, 2009

Director and producer Brian Ide came to UW-River Falls Oct. 16, with two lead roles in his newest movie, “Clear Lake, WI.” 

“Clear Lake, WI” is a movie about a group of childhood friends that return to their abandoned hometown to revisit the horrors that happened there 15 years ago. 

“I thought that the movie was put together in such a way that anyone, at any age, would be able to watch it and understand it,” Keith Cremin, a student at UWRF, said.

Ide was joined by actors Dustin Booth and Carla Toutz who spoke to UWRF students about their careers and gave advice.

“I didn’t want to be forty and wish that I would have done something,” Booth said. “I just didn’t want to do that and kick myself someday for not taking the chance.”

Toutz also gave an inspirational message to those pursuing an acting career.

“I used to picture an actress as a glamorous, perfectly put-together woman. I had to look at myself and say, ‘that’s not me.’ Once you’re happy with the person you are, that’s when you will be successful,” she said.

The chance to talk to the director and actors was very exciting for some students.

“I’m trying to take everything in and just learn,” Brian DeFord, a student at the University, said. “I want to be a director and it’s exciting to hear about it from someone firsthand. I know you have to start from the bottom and work your way up.”

UWRF professor Erik Johnson also said he found it exciting.

“It was so cool for them to call and say, ‘hey, we’re going to be in town would you like us to come speak at your school,’” he said.  “I’ve tried to call in favors to get people to come out here, and I think this was a great experience for the students.”

Toutz said he got to experience true “Minnesota nice,” or Midwest nice, while shooting the movie.

“I’ve worked in Los Angeles, and it’s just a completely different lifestyle. Filming out here was amazing,” he said. “I was shooting one day and one of the women in the neighborhood came out and gave me hot chocolate just to be nice.”

Ide said he enjoyed working in this area as well.

“It’s definitely different than it is in L.A.,” Ide said. “You have to watch your back out there. It’s nice out here.”

Ide, Booth, and Toutz went to the Hudson 12 Theater later during the day, where they signed autographs and sold DVDs.

“It’s really exciting to be out here,” Ide said. “We’ve been here every night for the past week, and it’s so great to see all these people coming to support the movie.”

“Clear Lake, WI” has been playing at the Hudson 12 Theater, and it will soon make its way to Eau Claire and Minneapolis.

“We are hoping for it to eventually go international,” Ide said. 

Many of the UWRF students that attended the speaking were at the movie that night.

“It was an amazing privilege and honor to meet a person that…has actually been out in the real world of directing and hearing firsthand what it’s like out in the real worlds of films,” Cremin said. “Whether you want to be a director, actor or [have a] different job position.”