Actor John Malkovich and his production company will arrive in Syracuse this summer and spend 6-8 weeks at work on the film "Hotel Syracuse," which will be shot in the 1930s hotel currently undergoing renovation in downtown Syracuse (500 S. Warren St.), annouced Syracuse International Film Festival managing director Christine Fawcett Shapiro. Extras for the film will be recruited from the Syracuse community.
Owen Shapiro, SYRFILM's artistic director and Shaffer Professor of Film in the Department of Transmedia in Syracuse University's College of Visual and Performing Arts, announced the upcoming film production March 6 at the annual Community You Can Count On Gala, sponsored by the Jewish Community Center of Syracuse at The Turning Stone Resort and Casino. SYRFILM was an honoree at the gala, along with two other community nonprofit organizations: Women Transcending Boundaries and the Cpl. Gregory J. Harris Military Courtesy Room at Syracuse Hancock International Airport.
Written by Shapiro and Israeli screenwriter/director Haim Bouzaglo, the film is a psychological thriller that tells the story of a math professor who comes to Syracuse to attend an international math conference. While staying at the Hotel Syracuse, he encounters friends, family and colleagues from his past and realizes he is not hallucinating.
Bouzaglo, a partner in Lunatique Films, is one of Israel's most well-known film directors. In 2007, he filmed "Session" starring Bar Refaeli,
Steven Bauer and Tom Bower, in Syracuse. "Session" will be released nationally in 2010 and will open the Syracuse International Film Festival in October 2010. While a visiting artist in Syracuse University's film program during spring 2007, Bouzaglo developed with Shapiro the idea of using the Hotel Syracuse as a character and location for the film of the same name. Bouzaglo immediately envisioned Malkovich as the leading character; Malkovich quickly agreed, bringing along the backing of his production company.
SYRFILM also begins its annual practice of sharing some of the festival's selection process by pre-screenings that are open to Central New York audiences, with the first session set for March 18th in Auburn, followed by another on March 23rd at Onondaga Community College and a third at the Hamilton Theater in Hamilton on March 30th. Details to follow.
For more information on Bouzaglo and Lunatique Films, see http://lunatiquefilms.com. Learn more about the Syracuse International Fil Festival at syrfilm.com.