The film “Point Defiance,” a new thriller shot entirely on Vashon, will have its Pacific Northwest premiere screening at Vashon Center for the Arts at 7 p.m. Friday, March 15.
The island-based producer of the film, Mark Sayre, will host and lead a question-and-answer session after the film.
The film tells the tale of stockbroker Peter Allen (Derek Phillips), whose world is turned upside down after his troubled brother Alex (Josh Crotty) returns from military duty in Afghanistan, forcing Peter to face a forgotten past that harbors a dark secret. The cast also includes Lauren Elaine (“DOE”) Sarah Butler (“I Spit on Your Grave”) and Steven Swadling (Kickboxer franchise) and is directed by Justin Foia. Phillips, in the lead role, is known for his role in “Friday Night Lights.”
The film was shot in 2016 on locations that included the waterfront home of Sayre’s parents and Old Mill Road. Post-production wrapped in 2017, and the film is now represented by Shoreline Entertainment and is making rounds on the film festival circuit.
Sayre, 35, grew up on Vashon and moved to Los Angeles after attending the University of Puget Sound. His production company, Lexicon, has now made seven films.
But in August, Sayre moved back to the island and says he now considers it his primary residence — and that he is excited to become a more active participant in the island arts scene.
“The advocacy for the arts on the island is really quite remarkable and is one of the things I love the most about living here,” he said.
His future plans include commuting back and forth to Los Angeles to make more films with Lexicon, while also exploring the creation of a Vashon nonprofit dedicated to curating innovative cinema, fostering independent cinema and creating film education experiences for youth.
Possibilities for the nonprofit, he said, might include a guest lecture series, coordinating outdoor screenings or even presenting a small weekend film festival on the island. He also envisions a youth-oriented film institute that would offer one- or two-week seminars teaching basic film making skills to students.
“I’d really like to give back to the community and youth with something like that,” he said. “It’s one thing I wish we’d had when I was growing up and going to high school on Vashon.”
Making “Point Defiance” on Vashon, he said, was a magical experience for him as well as his professional cast and crew. The impetus to shoot locally, he said, came from a desire to make more affordable movies in contained locations.
“It really felt like we were at summer film camp for adults,” he said. “I don’t think we’ll ever be able to replicate that experience.”
There is a $5 suggested donation for admittance to the screening of “Point Defiance.”