Resistance is far from futile

Student-made film The Fade: Resistance debuts Friday at the Panida

By Ben Olson
Reader Staff

When you get the cast of the upcoming student-made film The Fade: Resistance in a room together, magic happens. 

Led by Tim Bangle, of The Other Dog Films, this determined and talented group of young film buffs have taken their love for cinema and performance art to a whole new level. And they’re having a blast along the way. 

Wilhelm Anderson, left, and Josiah Burkamp, right, in a scene from The Fade: Resistance debuting Friday, Sept. 9 at the Panida Theater. Courtesy photo.

Debuting at the Panida Theater at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 9, The Fade: Resistance is the culmination of nearly a year of effort by Bangle and his troupe of actors. The script was written by Bangle, but he turned over directorial duties to his teenaged son Lukas for his first foray helming a film. Slowly but surely, actors were cast for parts — many of whom had never acted before — and filming began. 

“We’ve set this in the future, in 2052,” Bangle told the Reader. “So we’ve got a little bit of cyberpunk to it, with a slash of drama and some family dynamics.”

When teenaged Sam, played by Alora Weisz, is kidnapped by some nefarious characters, she is returned home only to find two of her other friends have also been taken. She and another friend set out to try to get their friends back from the kidnappers, discovering clues that point to the mysterious reason why these abductions have taken place. 

The film follows Sam as she finds her way through this dark reality forced upon her. While pursuing her two friends, she also must confront and recover from trauma in her own past.

“Alora has nailed it from day one,” Bangle said. “As soon as she walked in the room, I knew she was Sam. The confidence she’s had from the get go is amazing. She’s carried the show and she’s kind of led these guys on a journey and it’s been awesome having her as the lead.”

For Weisz, who has acted in a couple of commercials before, the audition process wasn’t completely new, but she had never been part of a movie before.

“I kind of thought I had a general idea what to expect, but what I thought was really cool was that they were going to do a movie here, because it’s a small town, a small place,” said Weisz. “It really surprised me.”

That’s precisely why Bangle began efforts to write and produce the film. 

“I’m from here and we didn’t have this while I was going to school,” he said. “I have the education and equipment, and I’d love to provide the opportunity to kids growing up here to be able to experience what I didn’t have growing up. I really wanted to give these kids a chance to explore filmmaking, and what better way to teach our youth how to make films than actually making films?”

Josiah Burkamp, who plays Panzer, first heard about auditions for the film on Facebook.

“It sounded fun,” he said. “I love watching movies. I watch them all the time. I didn’t have anything to go on before I came to the audition.”

Rounding out the cast is Wilhelm Anderson, who plays Devlin. Wilhelm was added to the cast late in the production.

“I joined a group with lots of inside jokes, but I was just this new person,” Anderson told the Reader. “I think that reflected my character a little bit.”

“We did do that somewhat intentionally,” Bangle said. “His character is like the outsider looking in, so I thought it would be experimental coming into this group already formed. It really worked out well.”

Macy Korsten, plays Tyler, and brought a lot to the table, according to Bangle.

“Her professionalism has been outstanding,” he said. “She’s usually the first one on set and she even took it upon herself to learn sign language for her role, thanks to some help from one of her teachers.”

Natalia Lemley plays Coen, which marks her debut acting role.

“Natalia has never acted before and she wears a mask in this film, and she speaks that character with her body language better than many professionals probably could,” Bangle said.

Crystal Pepperdine, at 8 years old, was the youngest member of the cast, playing a young version of Sam. Pepperdine said that while she was “scared to see myself on the screen,” it was a fun experience.

Holly Beaman plays Siberia, the antagonist. As one of the few adult cast members, Beaman enjoyed the experience of playing a villain with her talented cast members.

“I was kind of surprised to get cast as a bad guy,” Beaman told the Reader. “I’ve been in theater for about eight years, so I was really excited for the opportunity to try my hand at film.”

There are also cameo appearances by veteran Sandpoint actors Kate McAlister, Keely Gray-Heki, Robert Moore, Kevin Burkamp, Leland Watson, Steve Hammond and Wesleigh Hammond.

Lukas Bangle said one thing he enjoyed most about this experience was the interplay between the actors and those who worked on the technical aspects of the film.

“I liked building relationships between cast and crew,” Lukas said. “I made some good friends and even got some compliments from the crew on how I was funny.”

Along with Lukas as director, the crew includes Charlie Beaman as camera operator, a task he’d never attempted before this film.

“His first day out there he was shooting with a shoulder rig for six to eight hours,” Bangle said. “He never complained once, he was on the spot all the time and paid attention. He rocked it.”

Miriam Hammond and Threnody Hammon worked as production assistants and slate, providing valuable support for the crew.

“These two are our behind-the-scenes gurus,” Bangle said. “They’re the ones I go to set things up. I couldn’t have done it without either one of them.”

While the crew had a lot of laughs along the way, there were some difficult tasks to get through. Whether it was shivering in the mud, keeping the camera steady while running backwards, building intricate props for the film or just struggling to keep the giggles under control, the close-knit actors leaned on one another to produce what, at first glance, appears to be a really well-done sci-fi drama.

With this film finished and ready to debut, the cast and crew are already planning ahead for the eventual second and even third parts of the film. For now, though, Bangle said he’s blown away by the talent and level of commitment the actors and crew showed while making the film.

“When we started this thing I had no expectations,” he said. “We started with a group of four, then it trickled down to one, then everything just blossomed. Every one of these cast and crew members have contributed to this project and it’s looking so good. 

“Hearing all of their stories and their laughter is so cool,” Bangle added. “That’s what you hope for. You hope they’re going to take away that fun factor, that awe of movie making. It was really cool to have such an eclectic group of kids contribute to this story.”

The troupe will arrive at the Panida Theater in grand style in a limousine, and will walk the red carpet at 6 p.m. as they enter the theater. Audience members are encouraged to show up to cheer them on at 6 p.m. out front of the Panida. Tickets are $10 if purchased in advance or $12 at the door. 

With the success of The Fade: Resistance, Bangle hopes to continue his efforts with follow-up projects soon. If there are any local businesses or individuals who are interested in sponsoring these efforts, contact Tim Bangle at [email protected] 

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