Independent feature film screens in Corley Auditorium


Independent film Wichita screened at Corley

The Wild West is traveling through time to the 21st century and arriving on Missouri Southern’s campus tonight when Kansas-based screenwriter and director Nick Barton, along with the local film production company Prestigious Films, screens his new independent feature film in Corley Auditorium at 7 p.m.

The screening of Barton’s movie Wichita will cost $10 for non-students, but students will pay only $6 with student ID.

“We really wanted to have a college campus somewhere early on in our screening tour that was kind of a pre-made, arts-based culture, and we wanted it to be far enough from our home network so that people who know us wouldn’t influence how [the audience] perceived the film,” said Barton. “[Joplin] will actually be the fourth screening night that this film has ever seen and will be the first kind of younger demographic screening that we’ve ever had, so it should be really cool. We’ve got several different college campus cities throughout the midwest, but [Joplin] will officially be the first.”

Wichita, set in the late 1800s, tells the story of a drifter who travels to Wichita, Kan., to start his life over.

As he starts to get familiar with the townspeople, however, he is tracked down by both an escaped fugitive and a bounty hunter. According to Barton, once they all are in the same place at the same time, what follows is a series of explosions until the end.

“It’s not your grandpa’s western. It’s a very high octane, action packed, intense piece, where if you’re squeamish at heart, it’s probably not the right fit for you. But for people who come to see it, we’ve gotten insanely high reviews,” said Barton. “A lot of people have been comparing it to No Country for Old Men or A History of Violence, like, it’s just a very dangerous movie and it’s really heart-pounding the whole time you’re watching it.”

Students who watch the film should expect to see a multitude of local actors from all across the Four-State region in the film, Barton says.

“We brought some people in from Los Angeles and Seattle, but the real majority of the overall cast come from south central/southeast Kansas and Northwest Oklahoma. Our lead actor actually lives just outside of Tulsa, so it’s very much a regionally constructed piece,” he said.

At this point, Wichita does not yet have any widespread distribution deals set in place, but Barton and Prestigious Films are currently working to promote the film via a number of film festivals.

“We have submitted to some of the larger [festivals], and we have already had a couple distribution offers. So, we’ve got a couple companies out in Los Angeles that are wanting to take the movie and distribute it all the way across the country,” said Barton. “We’re kind of still weighing our options at this point in the game.”

After the film’s screening, Barton plans to hold a short meet and greet and Q&A session.

“Some of the filmmakers and actors will be available before [the screening] to just kind of introduce themselves,” he said. “Then after the movie, for anyone who’s interested, we’re going to make ourselves available for about 30 to 45 minutes for a Q&A session, so if anybody is interested and wants to know more about the project or have any questions about the film, they’re welcomed to stick around and have access to the filmmakers and some of the actors.”